In a historic matchup Down Under, the University of Hawai`i football team fell to the University of California, 51-31, in the opening game of the 2016 college football season at ANZ Stadium.
Cal racked up 630 yards of total offense to spoil the debut of UH head coach Nick Rolovich. The Bears were led by the exploits of senior transfer Davis Webb, who finished with 441 yards passing and four touchdowns. His target of choice was Chad Hansen who posted 14 catches for 160 yards and a pair of scores.
UH hung tough through more than a quarter and half before the game turned on miscues in the final four minutes of the opening half. That's when the Bears scored 17 straight points to take a commanding 34-14 lead at the break. UH would get no closer than 17 points in the second half.
The Rainbow Warriors did produce a strong ground performance with 248 yards rushing, including 118 yards and a touchdown from junior Diocemy Saint Juste. He was one of three UH running backs to score, with Steven Lakalaka and Paul Harris also finding the end zone.
Senior quarterback Ikaika Woolsey, starting for the second time in a UH season-opener, went 17-of-34 for 234 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
UH came aggressively out of the gates, attempting an onside kick on the game's opening play. Cal recovered and capitalized right away on a Khalf Muhammad 34-yard scoring run a little more than a minute in.
However, UH countered with a Marcus Kemp 39-yard catch-and-run down the sideline for UH's first touchdown of the season. After Cal went up 14-7 on a Hansen 19-yard catch from Webb, UH again came right back with an electrifying run 53-yard touchdown run by Saint Juste.
Cal led just 17-14 late in the second quarter but a pair of special team miscues put UH in a quick hole. The Bears were able get a field goal after a UH leaping penalty on a Cal punt allowed the Bears to extend a drive. UH then fumbled the ensuing kickoff. Cal struck on the next play with a 34-yard touchdown from Hansen. The Bears concluded the pivotal stretch with an 85-yard drive in the final 1:35 of the half, capped by a Webb 4-yard touchdown run.
The Rainbow Warriors next head to Ann Arbor to face No. 7 Michigan on Saturday, Sept. 3 at 12:00 p.m. EST (6:00 a.m. HT).