HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - St. Louis vs. Punahou was one of the games circled on both teams calendar heading into Saturday night, but the Crusaders got the better of the Buffanblu with a dominant offensive performance at Aloha Stadium, winning by a score of 49-13.
After a stalemate of a first quarter where both teams' defenses held true, the Crusaders were able to break the deadlock with their defense, as defensive lineman Tui Tuitele got a hold of Punahou quarterback Stephen Barber Jr. and pushed him out of bounds in the back of the end zone.
For as elusive as Barber is as a dual-threat quarterback, he found it difficult finding any running room in the first half as the Crusaders defense stormed the trenches, putting him under distress as soon as the ball was snapped.
After running for 113 yards in his last outing against Kamehameha last Saturday, Barber rushed for -3 yards against St. Louis, who also held Barber to 11-of-20 passing for 120 yards and a touchdown. With just 117 total yards to his name, Barber wasn't able to get his offense going, allowing St. Louis to capitalize.
Following the safety, St. Louis' offense drove down the field with quarterback Chevan Cordeiro at the wheel. Cordeiro found wideout Mitchell Quinn on a 23-yard pass to put St. Louis ahead, by two possessions. Cordeiro threw four touchdowns on the night, passing for 346 yards on 18-of-28 attempts.
Quinn was on the receiving end of three of those scores, as he caught six passes for 141 yards.
After a Cordeiro 1-yard run with a little over four minutes remaining in first half followed by a 22-yard field goal, the game was looking out of reach until Punahou find the end zone thanks to a Barber touchdown pass to Koa Eldredge from the five yard line.
After Quinn hauled in a 25-yard touchdown from Cordeiro, the deficit became too large for Punahou at the half, as they trailed 26-7. The third quarter led to more of the same as St. Louis' offense continued to roll, scoring two touchdowns within six minutes of the second half.
In the fourth, both teams looked to their second-string quarterbacks to end the game, as both substitutes led each team down the field for a touchdown apiece.
Forty-nine points is the most Punahou has conceded on defense all season, while their 13-point effort on offense was, coincidentally, the team's lowest mark of the season. Punahou falls to 4-1 on the season while St. Louis improves to 4-0, looking like the clear team to beat in the ILH division.
Punahou will have an opportunity to redeem itself against Kamehameha next Friday at Aloha Stadium as the Crusaders look to take on Narbonne, one day later, on Saturday at Aloha Stadium.