Sunday, October 25, 2015

St. Louis edges Punahou to win ILH title

A grueling two-team race in the ILH that started with double overtime ended with another thriller that came down to the final minute.

Saint Louis senior Saitaua Lefau scored the go-ahead touchdown on a 4-yard run with 3:50 remaining and defensive back Ronson Timbreza came down with the game-clinching interception in the final minute to give the Crusaders an emotional 27-23 victory over Punahou on Saturday night at Aloha Stadium.

No. 1 Saint Louis (8-1) finished off back-to-back wins against previous-No. 1 Punahou (8-2) to end the Buffanblu's four-year run atop the ILH.

The Crusaders won their first ILH title since 2010 by handing Punahou consecutive losses in ILH games for the first time in more than a decade.

"I'm just so happy for the players. They worked so hard and they deserve it," Saint Louis coach Cal Lee said. "We were fortunate the way things ended up. (Punahou) is a helluva football team. It's too bad only one can go (to the state tournament). That's the way it is."

Saint Louis blew a double-digit lead in the second half of a 51-45 double overtime loss to Punahou in the first meeting this season.

The Crusaders ended Punahou's 20-game winning streak in the ILH last week to force a one-game playoff and then came back after losing a 20-10 lead in the third quarter.

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