HONOLULU -- With only a few days of preparation for the Hula
Bowl, the Aina team had a simple game plan.
Marshall's Bernard Morris threw for 172 yards and a touchdown in
the first half to lead the Aina to a 38-7 victory over the Kai in
the Hula Bowl on Saturday.
"We just came out here to have fun and throw the ball around a
little bit. And that's what we did," said Morris, who finished
11-of-22 and sat out most of the second half.
Aina's defense also stepped up, setting the tone in the lopsided
all-star game. Aina held Kai (West) to 240 yards, including just 35
yards rushing, and forced six turnovers that led to 28 points.
The Aina took control early, forcing three turnovers and
recording three sacks in the first half, including two by
Cincinnati's Angelo Craig.
"We just tried to come out and show everyone what East Coast
football is all about and I think we did that," he said.
Angelo now has his sights on the NFL and vows to return to Aloha
Stadium one day.
"I'm coming back but next time it will be in a pro uniform,"
Nakamura earlier recovered a fumble by Marcus Thomas near
midfield. Six plays later, Smith scored on a 1-yard plunge.
Smith also scored on a 6-yard run to put Aina up 14-0 seconds
after Tennessee's J.T. Mapu, who starred at nearby Kahuku High
School, stripped Stanford's T.C. Ostrander.
"I thought we would win, but I was surprised that it was by
that much," Mapu said. "We just did a good job on both sides of
Ostrander had a game he wishes the NFL scouts would soon forget.
He was 1-of-7 for 6 yards.
The Kai avoided a shutout when O'Connell connected with Jordan
on a 15-yard TD pass play on fourth-and-long to cut the Aina's lead
to 24-7 late in the third quarter.
O'Connell found the Hawaii connection on the 12-play, 79-yard
scoring drive. He completed passes of 17 and 10 yards to Jason
Rivers and a 15-yarder to C.J. Hawthorne.
Arthur Carmody's 38-yard field goal gave the Aina a 24-0 lead to
start the second half. He missed a 32-yarder earlier in the game.
"They just played aggressive and they flew around the ball,"
said Amir Pinnix, who had four carries for 9 yards for the Kai. "I
tip my hat to them because they are all-stars and they got some
pretty good players over there."
The Aina was coached by Illinois' Ron Zook and Boston College's
Jeff Zagodzinski. The Kai was led by UNLV's Mike Sanford and Oregon
State's Mike Riley.
"The players were a joy to work with," Zook said. "They are
good guys who wanted to help each other and they absolutely came
Once the jewel of college all-star games, with alumni including
Dan Marino, Tony Dorsett, Mike Ditka and Fran Trakenton, the Hula
Bowl this year appeared to be in trouble.
There were only a couple thousand fans in 50,000-seat Aloha
Stadium. Some players complained about overcrowded hotel rooms. In
the press box, there was no statistics crew, let alone a bowl
It also was the first time in years the game was not televised