Las Vegas • Honolulu Kahuku’s may have had more fans at Sam Boyd Stadium than UNLV did in its historic home loss to Howard last week, but it was Bingham’s football team that made the loudest statement in Saturday’s nightcap of the inaugural Polynesian Football Classic.
The Miners, ranked 16th nationally in MaxPreps.com’s Xcellent 25, wasted no time in establishing their physical dominance in their 17-0 victory over No. 23 Kahuku.
Bingham used a punishing rushing game and stalwart defense to outgain the Red Raiders 237 to 121 to improve to 4-0. The Miners served Kahuku its first shutout loss since 2008. Bingham has held its first four opponents to just 7.75 points per game, which includes high-powered East.
“We were stout the entire way,” Bingham coach John Lambourne said. “There were not very many mistakes happening out there. I think this is a real good football team that we were able to do that against. Our guys just stuck in there. We pursued really well to the ball. Coach [Karl] Cloward and all the guys that work with him did a great job. Overall, pretty clean game defensively.”
The Miners limited Kahuku to just 15 offensive plays in the first half and prevented the Red Raiders from crossing midfield on their first six possessions and seven of their eight possessions overall. The only time Kahuku got close enough to score, the Miners stopped the Red Raiders on fourth-and-2 from the Bingham 4-yard line.
Meanwhile, Kahuku’s heralded defense, which held its first four opponents to a mere 13 points overall, proved to be no match for Bingham’s offense, which had 149 yards rushing on 44 carries.
Bingham quarterback Ryan Wood completed 5 of 13 pass attempts for 88 yards and ran for 33 yards on 16 carries with one touchdown. Braedon Wissler had 40 yards on 18 carries, while Amoni Kaili rumbled for 71 yards on 10 carries with one touchdown. KC Lewis caught two passes for 36 yards and BYU commit Brayden Cosper hauled in three for 52 yards.
Wood said none of the offensive success would have been possible without his guys in the trenches.
“I love my offensive line, they’re the best in the state. I wouldn’t take anybody else over them,” Wood said. “That’s a good defensive line, a good football team defensively. It’s hard to score against them, so tribute to our O-line, our backs, receivers — everyone around me. They just help me make plays.”