PUKALANI - The Baldwin High School football team's recipe for success: Mix in Keelan Ewaliko early and late, add some Abraham Reinhardt in the middle and wrap it up with Jordan Hoiem and Miki Fangatua.
With a lot of help from their teammates, the Bears' standouts all did their thing in a 42-20 win over Kamehameha Maui at Kanaiaupuni Stadium on homecoming night for the Warriors on Friday.
Ewaliko had two touchdown runs - Baldwin's first score, from 2 yards out, and a game-breaking 70-yarder on the first possession of the third quarter. In between, Reinhardt scored on a 54-yard punt return and 85-yard kickoff return.
Baldwin High School’s Abraham Reinhardt returns a kickoff for a touchdown during the second quarter of the Bears’ 42-20 victory over Kamehameha Maui on Friday at Kanaiaupuni Stadium.
The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo
Kamehameha Maui’s Pono Freitas takes a handoff from quarterback Chase Newton and follows blocker Makoa Medeiros in the first half.
The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo
Hoiem, the All-Star linebacker with four college scholarship offers who was playing just his second game of the season after illness and injury, had several tackles and recovered a fumble to set up the final Baldwin touchdown.
Fangatua was a force all night on the defensive line.
Baldwin coach A.J. Roloos was hardly overjoyed with his team's effort. The Bears, who wrapped up their eighth straight Maui Interscholastic League Division I title last week, improved to 6-1 overall in the league and 3-0 in the second round. Kamehameha's season ends at 2-6 overall and 1-3 in the second round.
MIL SECOND-ROUND Standings
(Overall MIL record in parentheses)
|Maui High (2-4)||0||2||.000||31||70|
|King Kekaulike (1-5)||1||1||.500||19||49|
|KS Maui (2-6)||1||3||.250||51||110|
x-clinched overall championship,
y-won first-round championship
Baldwin 42, Kamehameha Maui 20
Maui High vs. King Kekaulike at War Memorial Stadium, 7 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 26
Lahainaluna vs. Maui High at War Memorial Stadium, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 27
Baldwin vs. King Kekaulike at War Memorial Stadium, 7 p.m.
"We struggled, I don't know what it is nowadays with kids," Roloos said. "We weren't focused from the beginning. It's a good thing we have got great athletes that stepped up and special teams. We put up 42 points, but we gave up 20. We will watch the film. You know, we have got to get better."
The Bears took a 21-13 lead into halftime on the strength of Reinhardt's fifth and sixth kick-return scores this season.
"First, I would like to thank God for all the abilities he gave me," Reinhardt said. "Second, this is just a team effort. Nothing can be done without a team. Everybody is accountable for their own thing. We started off not so good tonight, but we ended up picking it up."
Kamehameha took a 7-0 lead when Makoa Medeiros, who finished with 100 yards on 20 carries, rumbled straight up the middle for 14 yards to cap a 64-yard, six-play drive with 23 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
Ewaliko tied the score on the Bears' next possession, with 8:31 to go in the half. He and running back Dusty Flores accounted for all 63 yards on the ground in the 11-play drive. Ewaliko ran six times for 46 yards and threw an incomplete pass, while Flores ran for 17 yards on four carries.
The Baldwin defense then forced a three-and-out, and Reinhardt grabbed Kamahao Romero's 35-yard punt and sprinted down the center of the field before juking the last couple of would-be tacklers and crossing the goal line with 7:53 to go in the half.
Kamehameha responded by going 80 yards on 14 plays, and climbed within 14-13 with 1:01 left when Chase Newton hit Taylor Kaaukai on a 10-yard touchdown pass.
The Warriors elected to kick to Reinhardt again, and he bolted up the middle and to the right sideline for a touchdown.
One week after Lahainaluna decided not to kick to him, Reinhardt had his second multiple-touchdown game on kick returns - he had three kick-return scores in a win over King Kekaulike on Sept. 21.
Reinhardt has averaged 48 yards and scored three times on his eight kickoff returns this season, and averaged 42.3 yards with three scores on seven punt returns. He also has a 59-yard fumble return for a score, and a 5-yard touchdown catch.
Ewaliko had two touchbacks on kickoffs and punted twice for a 31-yard average before he left a bit banged-up after his final touchdown run left him with 105 yards on 11 carries - he has a league-best 597 rushing yards this season, on 56 carries.
"They have great athletes on offense, and they can hurt you if you make a mistake," said Kamehameha coach Kevin O'Brien. "They have good athletes on defense, and they can hurt you if you make a mistake there. They can hurt you in the kicking game. They can hurt you on that because they have got that kid who can run it back. Their kickoff and their punts are tough because they pin you deep all the time. It's very difficult, and the margin for error is very small for a lot of us in this league."
O'Brien was proud of his team's effort.
"I'm not surprised, my kids battle," O'Brien said. "I knew my kids would come and play tonight. I mean this is a big deal, this is homecoming. Our kids have a lot of pride, our kids have worked hard for a long time. I'm proud of them."
* Robert Collias is at firstname.lastname@example.org
Baldwin ..... 0 ..... 21 ..... 14 ..... 7-42
KS Maui ..... 7 ....... 6 ....... 0 ..... 7-20
KSM-Makoa Medeiros 14 run (Kamahao Romero kick), 0:23.
B-Keelan Ewaliko 2 run (Zacharia Coloma-Mariano kick), 8:31.
B-Abraham Reinhardt 54 punt return (Coloma-Mariano kick), 7:53.
KSM-Taylor Kaaukai 10 pass from Chase Newton (kick blocked), 1:01.
B-Reinhardt 85 kickoff return (Coloma-Mariano kick), 0:47.
B-Ewaliko 70 run (Coloma-Mariano kick), 9:38.
B-Dusty Flores 5 run (Coloma-Mariano
B-Ryan Graham 1 run (Coloma-Mariano kick), 10:33.
KSM-Billy Ayakawa 9 pass from Newton (Romero kick), 5:59.
Junior varsity-Baldwin 21, Kamehameha Maui 18.