Boise State vs. Hawaii Recap: How The Broncos Defeated The Warriors
Broncos cruise to a win over Hawaii.
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Chase Cord comes in relief to get the win.
Boise State has had games with this kind of feeling often in the past couple of years. Two years ago the build-up was for a road game in Fresno leading up to a rematch in the conference championship game. Last year. it was late-season games against Fresno State and Utah State. The biggest differences are the Broncos don’t have an extremely experienced quarterback, and this game isn’t in late November.
Boise State comes into the game undefeated and rolling after their first conference win. Freshman quarterback Hank Bachmeier has been playing well and the defense has been lights out all season. They have had their struggles in certain areas of their games, but those struggles have not been enough to really hurt them. Boise State holds a 12-3 edge in the all-time series and is looking to improve on their six-game winning streak against the Warriors.
Hawai’i is also rolling after racking up 2 wins against the PAC12 and throttling Nevada 54-3 in Reno. The only blemish on their season is a 52-20 loss in Seattle to Washington. Quarterback Cole McDonald has done well this year overall but has had to be pulled from the games against Arizona and Washington due to making poor decisions throwing the ball. The Warriors look to get above .500 on the road this season which is a rare feat.
Hawai’i won the coin toss and elected to take the ball in the hopes of getting on the board first. That plan did not get off to the best start as the Warriors didn’t complete a pass and had a 4-yard run negated by a false start on the following play The Bronco defense stood firm and forced a 3 and out on their first series.
Boise State put the Hawai’i game plan of “hit them first” to bed as they took just four plays, with three different players receiving the snap from center, to cover 57 yards to the endzone. Hank Bachmeier took two snaps, one of which was a 30-yard pass to John Hightower with a late hit penalty tacked on after the play. Chase Cord followed with a run-pass option pass to Matt Pistone that gained 7 yards. The drive was capped off with Khalil Shakir taking the snap and running the ball 5 yards to the endzone to give the Broncos the early lead.
The Warriors started to move the ball on their following possession with Cole McDonald completing all 3 of his passes and getting their first first down of the game. On a 2nd and 4 play, McDonald completed a quick pass to Cedric Byrd who was quickly swarmed by the Bronco defense. Before going down, Bronco safety Keaula Kaniho stripped the ball from Byrd, causing the first turnover of the game.
Starting the new drive in their own territory, the Bronco offense kept Bachmeier under center for the entirety of the drive. Robert Mahone got most of the work on the drive carrying the ball 3 times, which helped Hightower get just behind the defense on a 26-yard touchdown pass from Bachmeier.
The Warriors, now looking at an 0-14 hole got the big play that they were looking for. On the second play of their drive, Hawai’i emptied the backfield to create the matchup issue they were looking for. Cedric Byrd easily caught the pass being as there was not a defender within 10 yards of him, and picked up 46 yards down to the Boise State 17-yard line. McDonald hit Lincoln Victor in the endzone on the following play to close the Boise State lead to 14-7.
The Hawai’i defense had some issues on the following drive, giving Boise State two first downs on pass interference and targeting calls. Fortunately, those were the only two first downs that they gave up. With the targeting penalty being upheld, Warrior linebacker Jeremiah Pritchard was ejected from the game. Bronco punter Joel Valazquez did an impeccable job pinning Hawai’i deep by dropping the ball inside the 10-yard line.
The sloppy play continued on both sides with five penalties on a drive that only had 4 plays. Three of them were on one play as Hawai’i was called for holding and there were offsetting unsportsmanlike penalties after the play. Hawaii did manage to gain 12 yards on the drive punting from the Boise State 19 yard line after starting on the 7-yard line.
Boise State 14, Hawai’i 7
Boise State started with great field position after getting the ball on their own 48-yard line. Jaylon Henderson saw his first action of the game getting a couple of snaps on the drive. The Broncos moved the ball well enough to get into field goal range and Eric Sachse was able to convert on a 38-yard attempt.
Being back down 10 points, Hawai’i wanted to do more than go 3 and out on the following drive. After failing to convert on a 3rd and 1 play coach Nick Rolovich decided to go for it on their own 35-yard line. After focusing on the pass on the first three plays, Hawai’i attempted to run for the first down and was quickly brought down for a 6-yard loss.
Starting their second drive in their own territory, the Broncos knew points were within reach. Mahone gained 7 yards on 2 carries, setting up a 3rdd and short. Hank Bachmeier took the ball and had gained 4 yards before taking a hard hit to his left side that jarred the ball out of his hand. Hawai’i quickly jumped on the ball ending the Bronco drive. Bachmeier limped off the field and was taken to the injury tent shortly after getting to the sideline.
Boise State’s defense stepped up and forced another 3 and out against the Warrior offense. Chase Cord lead the Broncos out on their next drive as Bachmeier was still being tended to. The offense was able to gain one first down but was not able to put much else together. Joel Velasquez was able to pin the Warriors inside their 10-yard line again, keeping the field position in favor of the Broncos.
Hawai’i didn’t look like they were going to do much on their following drive after McDonald’s pass on 3rd and 15 fell incomplete. The Bronco secondary was flagged for pass interference on the play, giving new life to the Warrior drive. On the following play, McDonald was pressured by STUD Curtis Weaver into what looked like an incomplete pass. The referees never blew the whistle on the play and Kekoa Nawahine casually picked up the ball turning it into a fumble recovery which was upheld after review.
With the Warrior’s ability to score quickly and often, the Broncos wanted to get some distance from them on the scoreboard. The drive didn’t look to be off to a good start after they had a 6-yard run negated by a holding penalty and faced 2nd and 20. Instead of looking to get some of the yardage back Chase Cord sent a strike downfield hitting Khalil Shakir for a 33-yard touchdown to open up a 17 point lead.
The Bronco defense decided that the last fumble was so fun that they did it on the first play of the following drive. After a 4 yard completion to Jared Smart, Linebacker Benton Wickersham was able to cause a fumble that was recovered by Riley Whimpey on the Hawai’i 29 yard line. This marks the third time in six games that Hawai’i has turned the ball over two or more times in the first half of a game.
Boise State kept the momentum by running the ball to get into the endzone. Robert Mahone got most of the carries, running the ball four times on the six plays, including the final 13 yards to the score.
Facing a 24 point hole, the Warriors desperately needed to piece some kind of drive together. Hawai’i was able to piece together a drive and got some big chunk plays that they had been looking for since their second drive of the game. The two Bronco penalties that resulted in first downs were helpful on the drive as well. McDonald’s was able to find Melquise Stovall for a 21-yard touchdown with 30 seconds left in the half.
Boise State 31, Hawai’i 14