The Pacific University football team celebrated a homecoming for 16 student-athletes and its rich tradition with a 45-22 win over Occidental College in the first-ever NCAA Division III football game in Hawaii.
The Boxers, who have campuses both in Honolulu, Hawaii, and its main campus in Forest Grove, Oregon, moved its regular season non-conference game at Kamehameha Kapalama Stadium. The host stadium served as a homecoming for four Boxers' including freshman quarterback Brett Yep Jr., senior linebacker Trey Kodama, sophomore cornerback Chad Farias and sophomore defensive lineman Zach Souza and a Boxer roster that features 26 native Hawaiians as well as Occidental head coach Doug Semones, who served as a head coach for Kahuku High School from 1989 to 1995.
With a near-capacity crowd, nearly all in Boxer red were given plenty to cheer about in the win. Pacific outgained Occidental by a 536-407 margin, including a 285-108 advantage on the ground. Kamana Pimental had 87 yards on 16 carries and Brandon Boyd added nine carries for 70 yards to go along with two touchdowns. Defensively, senior Jack Perez led the Boxers with 11 tackles, including three for negative yardage. It was his third straight game with double-digit tackles.
Senior quarterback Campbell Summerfield completed 21 of 28 passes for 251 yards and two touchdowns. One of his favorite targets was Kobe Williams, who had his second straight 100-yard receiving game, with 10 receptions for 160 yards and a touchdown.
Next, after the Boxers' forced a turnover on the ensuing kickoff, Summerfield quickly connected with Williams on a 26-yard pass and catch to put the Boxers' ahead 14-0 with 7:08 left in the opening quarter.
Early in the second quarter, Pacific extended its lead to 20-0 when Camren Henry caught a 20-yard pass completion from Summerfield for the touchdown. The Tigers answered with a seven-play, 69-yard drive that saw Bryan Scott run it in from a yard to cut the deficit to 20-7 with 10:40 left in the opening half.
Later in the quarter, the Boxers got back on the board when Boyd broke up the middle for a 17-yard touchdown run to stretch the lead to 27-7. Pacific extended its lead to 30-7 with a 17-play, 64-yard drive to open the second half that ended with a 27-yard field goal by Alex Beekman. The two teams traded touchdowns later in the quarter and in the fourth quarter.
The Boxers left Hawaii on Sunday morning with memories of a lifetime and its first win of the 2016 season.