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Leilehua holds off Service of Alaska

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The Leilehua Mules made it a sweep for Hawaii schools over Alaska powerhouses with a narrow 23-15 win over Service on Friday at Hugh Yoshida Stadium on the Leilehua campus.

Leilehua led Service, ranked No. 2 in the 49th state by MaxPreps, 23-7 at halftime. But the Cougars stopped a fake punt at midfield and scored on a 17-yard sweep by multi-talented Viliamu Aukusitino.

After the 5-11, 190-pound senior scored on another sweep for the 2-point conversion, Service trailed 23-15 with 7:43 remaining.

Service’s next series ended on a pick by Brennon Jacinto, who had kicked a field goal in the first half.

The visitors got one more chance with 48 seconds left and drove from their 31-yard line to the Leilehua 28 on a big scramble by quarterback T.J. Toomer and a 24-yard strike to Trevor Williamson. Three players were injured in that final series, including two Mules.

With 10 seconds to go at the Mules’ 28-yard line, Toomer scrambled and was tripped up by Leilehua’s Chance DeLuca, forcing a fumble that ended the Cougars’ chances as time expired.

“That’s what great games are about. Leilehua came prepared and injuries hurt us a little bit, but we make no excuses. It was a great game,” Cougars coach Numi Ilalio said, noting a key loss in receiver Matthew Ilalio.

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