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Lunas-Bears: The sexy, money game of the season
October 11, 2012 - Robert Collias
The most-anticipated regular-season MIL game in a long, long time takes place on Saturday night at War Memorial Stadium.
This one could come down to defense and no one is better on that side of the ball than the Lunas. It is easy enough to look at the 80 yards per game they have given up to six MIL opponents — 21.2 in the air, 58.8 on the ground — and shake your head with amazement. The 3 points they have surrendered in MIL play and 10 in seven overall games (one of Keaau's touchdowns in a 35-14 loss was an interception return) is simply astounding.
Looking a little closer, Baldwin has finished the last three seasons on top of the MIL defensive lists — at 193.6 ypg given up in 2009, 146.6 in 2010, and 128.0 last year — bringing the Lunas' 80-per-game number more into focus.
The Lunas have also dominated the takeaway turnover ratio in league play. They have 19 takeaways — 13 interceptions and six fumble recoveries — and have lost the ball just six times, on five fumbles and an interception. Half of their turnovers came on three lost fumbles last week.
Backup quarterback and starting DB Jeffrey Ancog has four interceptions, two of which he returned for touchdowns, Tytus Lucas has three interceptions, and Semisi Filikitonga has three interceptions, two of which he turned in to pick-sixes. Filikitonga, a 5-5, 140-pound senior, has also forced four fumbles, recovering three of them.
Baldwin has its own non-offensive scoring machine in Abraham Reinhardt, who returned a fumble for a score, and has found the house four times on kick returns — he is fourth on the league in scoring with one offensive touch on the season, a 5-yard touchdown reception.
Reinhardt had 143 yards on five kick returns vs. the Lunas on Sept. 7. For the season, he has 572 yards on 13 kick returns and a 59-yard fumble return for a touchdown. He has averaged 47.1 yards on his six kickoff returns, and 40.3 on six punt returns.
The Bears have a 6-0 advantage on takeaway-turnover ratio in their four MIL games that are not against Lahainaluna. Versus the Lunas in a 32-0 loss on Sept. 7, the Bears lost the takeaway-turnover battle 4-2.
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