By KEVIN JAKAHI
Tribune-Herald sports writer
KEAAU — It was a hard-fought football win for Kamehameha's 20 seniors in their last game at home, something to be expected against close neighbor Keaau.
The Warriors blanked the Cougars 16-0 in a Big Island Interscholastic Federation Crosstown Rivalry Week game at Paiea Stadium that featured physical play from both sides and lots and lots of passing.
The seedings for each team's respective division playoffs were already set. The game was insignificant as far as standings. But both teams didn't take it easy or pull their starters.
It was a hard-hitting border war that threw in all types of tidbits for the fans: turnovers (seven for Keaau, three for Kamehameha), penalties (too many to count for both sides), and just enough offense to keep people glued to their metal-bleacher seats.
Logan Uyetake caught a 38-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Micah Kanehailua on a fourth-and-long gamble in the second quarter. Uyetake later kicked a 42-yard field goal, and Ina Teofilo scored on a 4-yard run in the fourth quarter.
The Warriors (5-4 overall, 4-3 BIIF) next play at Hawaii Prep at 3 p.m. Saturday in the BIIF Division II semifinals. In the last meeting, Kamehameha took it on the chin and fell 41-24, watching Ka Makani running back Bobby Lum blister its run defense for 235 yards on 31 attempts.
The Cougars (1-6, 1-6) next play at Hilo on Friday in the BIIF Division I semifinals.
Senior running back Teofilo, who was dealing with a hamstring issue, was less than his best, but powered the ground attack. He rushed for 90 yards on 21 carries, including a 4-yard score in the fourth quarter.
The other Warriors finished with 9 yards on 17 carries, showing No. 27's value when he totes the ball. Teofilo didn't have explosion in his legs and mostly ran between the tackles.
Kiliona Pomroy led Keaau's rushing attack with 60 yards on 11 carries, getting one positive gain when he lowered the boom on a Warrior defender, flattening him for a pancake collision.
Kanehailua didn't have good rhythm or timing with his receivers. But the junior quarterback was 14 of 29 for 184 yards with one touchdown and one pick.
Keaau quarterback George Lucas-Tadeo went to the air far more often. He was 13 of 35 for 158 yards with three interceptions, all in the second half.
One reason for Lucas-Tadeo's 37 percent completion rate was the pass-rush pressure from Paka Davis. The Warrior senior right end didn't record any sacks, but his ability to collapse the pocket opened up holes for others.
Fellow senior Timmy Burke, Zaric Binyan and Malcolm Baptiste each sacked Lucas-Tadeo, who escaped a half-dozen times and scrambled for 31 yards on 10 carries. (He had long runs of 24, 19 and 10 yards, but sacks wiped out those gains.)
Cohlby Espaniola was Lucas-Tadeo's favorite target. He caught four passes for 88 yards. Usti Koga had Keaau's interception.
Kamehameha senior Kaua Aganus and sophomore Iokepa Shiroma had interceptions. Uyetake had two catches for 42 yards and Alapaki Iaea had six receptions for 88 yards.
The Cougars didn't help themselves with all those fumbles, including two turnovers in the red zone.
Keaau 0 0 0 0 — 0
Kamehameha 0 7 0 9 — 16
Kam — Logan Uyetake 38 pass from Micah Kanehailua (Uyetake kick), 9:43
Kam — Ina Teofilo 4 run ( kick failed), 9:36
Kam — Uyetake FG 42, 8:37