Highlights: Saint Juste, FG blocks help Hawaii past Western Carolina

Viane Moala

Box Score HONOLULU – The University of Hawai’i Rainbow Warrior football team won its home opener for the third straight season with a 41-18 victory of Western Carolina Saturday night at Hawaiian Tel TCU Field at Aloha Stadium. UH moved to 2-0 with the win, its first such start since 2009

UH got a milestone performance from senior running back Diocemy Saint Juste and the Rainbow Warrior special teams showed up in a huge way to lead the way.

Saint Juste rushed for 202 yards and one touchdown on 25 carries to became the first player in school history to log a pair of 200 yards games in a career. The senior—who previously ran for 205 yards in a win over Nevada last season—rushed for 181 of his yards in the first half alone, nine yards shy of the UH record for rushing yards in a half (190) set by Anthony Edgar in 1982.

Meanwhile, UH blocked a school record three WCU field goal attempts, including two by senior linemanMeffy Koloamatangi. His second block led to an 89-yard touchdown return by Trayvon Henderson in the third quarter that gave UH a 27-10 lead.

UH staked a 21-10 lead at the half thanks in large part to Saint Juste and junior wide receiver Dylan Colliewho accounted for 298 of UH’s 300 first-half yards and two of its three touchdowns. Collie had 94 of this 104 yards receiving in the first half and surpassed the 100-yard mark for the second time in his career.

The Warriors out-gained ECU by just 20 yards in that first half (300-280), but the Catamounts were thwarted twice on field goal blocks in the first quarter, one each by Kolamatangi and Viane Moala, who blocked his third kick of his career.

The UH defense forced three Catamount turnovers, including two fumble recoveries in the second half to deny any hopes of a WCU comeback.

UH quarterback Dru Brown threw for 154 yards and two TDs. Running back Ryan Tuiasoa had career-bests of 16 carries for 83 yards, helping UH generate 298 yards on the ground. Linebacker Jahlani Tavai‘s 10 tackles led the defense which totaled five sacks and 14 tackles for loss.

The Rainbow Warriors now head back on the road where they will take on UCLA at the Rose Bowl on Saturday, Sept. 9. Kickoff is set for 2:00 p.m. PT/11:00 am HT


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