Kinnick bounces Edgren, takes DODDS Japan title
Stars and Stripes
MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan – Dre Paylor and Dustin Wilson continue to rack up points and yards at a gluttonous rate for Nile C. Kinnick. But on Friday, they went up against a far different Robert D. Edgren team than they faced in Week 2 of the season.
Paylor rushed 24 times for 306 yards and two touchdowns and Wilson combined for 218 yards rushing and passing and scored four times, helping the Red Devils outlast the Eagles 48-32. Kinnick improved to 6-1 and clinched its first DODDS Japan championship in school history.
“Awesome,” Kinnick coach Daniel Joley said. “I’m excited for the kids. We’re more excited for them to be successful, because they’re such a good group of kids.”
But this was a far cry from the 35-0 Kinnick home victory on Aug. 30; the Red Devils led this game just 21-20 at halftime.
“This was a different team than we saw the first time,” Joley said. “They played a couple of new guys who made a difference for them. The quarterback (Khaleem Shabazz) got into open space and made it a track meet for awhile.”
“We’re there. We’re a football team now. We’re getting closer,” Eagles coach Blaine Miller said. “We all looked at each other at the end and said, ‘OK, we’re ready.’ So we’ll take this and move forward.”
Paylor, who leads the Pacific with 1,475 yards, also had 114 yards on three returns. Wilson rushed 18 times for 150 yards and four touchdowns and was 3-for-12 for 68; he leads the Pacific with 25 total touchdowns.
“They’re a dynamic duo,” Joley said.
Greg Bacon had 42 yards and a touchdown on six carries, plus 10 tackles, two for losses, while George Calvert had 17 tackles and Ian O’Brien seven tackles, three for losses, one sack and a fumble recovery for Kinnick.
For the Eagles, Shabazz rushed for three touchdowns and Tyrone Bacalso added two rushing TDs and had 268 all-purpose yards. “He had a monster game,” Miller said.
Next for Edgren is their first of two showdowns with Zama American with the visitor’s berth in the Far East Division II title game at stake. That kickoff is at 7 p.m. Oct. 18 at Naval Air Facility Atsugi’s Reid Memorial Stadium.
Kinnick next resumes the battle for its first Kanto Plain Association of Secondary Schools title in 15 years when it hosts American School In Japan; kickoff is at 7 p.m. Friday.