Mike Thomas led Hawaii (2-1) with 14 points but they all came in the first half as he struggled with foul trouble in the second. Isaac Fleming added 11 points for the Rainbow Warriors before fouling out.
Hawaii used a 16-2 run highlighted by Quincy Smith's two-handed dunk to take a 48-39 lead with 8:07 remaining in the game. But the Panthers would regain the momentum with a 20-3 run. The Rainbow Warriors came within three points, 56-53, with less than two minutes remaining but couldn't close the gap.