The University of Hawaii Rainbow Warrior football team concluded its spring season with the annual Warrior Bowl Saturday afternoon at Clarence T.C. Ching Field. The defense took center stage, out-dueling the offense by a 60-34 count.
The third annual "Spring Fling," which also included a youth clinic and alumni game, drew a crowd of close to 1,000 fans, who witnessed a dominating performance by a re-tooled Rainbow Warrior defense. The controlled scrimmage included 20-25 plays each quarter with a scoring system that credited points for certain scenarios including explosive offensive plays, forced turnovers and sacks.
The defense got off to a 17-0 lead in the game, shutting out the offense in the first and third quarters and never trailed throughout. The offense cut the deficit to 38-34 in the fourth quarter, but the defense out-scored the offense 22-2 the rest of the way, capped by Dee Maggitt's 38-yard interception return for a touchdown to end the contest.
The defense tallied six sacks and recovered three fumbles from Moses Samia, Marrell Jackson and Raymond Mulitalo.
"I thought the defense played really well," head coach Norm Chow said. "The scheme is very difficult and it makes it a whole lot more tougher for the offense. It was fun to see."
Offensively, Ikaika Woolsey started as the No. 1 quarterback and completed 14-of-24 for 164 yards and directed the offense to a pair of scoring drives. Woolsey scored two rushing touchdowns including a 60-yard keeper in the fourth quarter. Jeremy Higgins finished 9-of-18 for 125 yards including a 36-yard touchdown pass to Samson Anguay. Running back Diocemy Saint Juste had game highs of 15 rushes for 66 yards.
"I continue to make good decisions with the ball," Woolsey said. "I gotta be smart, gotta make smart decisions and continue to move the chains," said Woolsey. "I feel like we've made really good strides (this spring), moving forward. The defense showed up today and made big plays for us."
"We saw some enthusiasm and that's what we gotta have," Chow said. "It's a tough fall coming up but if they play like they did today, I feel really good about it."