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Kinser improves to 2-0 in military football play

The Kinser Kings aren’t playing anything like an expansion team in their first two weeks in the U.S. Forces Japan-American Football League.

Matt Huffman returned two punts for touchdowns in the first half and player-coach Sanford James threw and ran for scores and the Kings improved to 2-0 by downing the Hansen Wolfpack 30-18 on Saturday.

The win comes on the heels of Kinser’s debut the week before, a 34-20 win over reigning South Division champion Kadena.

Right from the start of the season, the Kings were planning on not being the typical expansion doormat, James said. “We were aiming to be competitive,” he said. “We wanted to compete. I have athletes on the team. They’re going to pull us through.”

James ran a bootleg into the end zone for a first-half touchdown, then threw a short TD pass to Jason Jarmond. A goal-line touchdown run by Jason Jarmond capped the Kings’ scoring.

Jesse Swanson replied with touchdown passes of 60 and 20 yards to Marquis Pough and 70 to Antonio Torres for the Wolfpack, which was playing its opener.

The team Kinser beat in its opener, Kadena, rebounded later Saturday by routing Foster 32-6 before a sparse crowd on a windy evening at Kadena Air Base’s McDonald Stadium.

Manny Griffin, the lone holdout from the old Okinawa Football League in 2004-05, ran for touchdowns of 8 and 98 yards for the Dragons. Ralph Jones added a 10-yard TD run, Jeremy Brown one of 20 and Reggie Mebane fell on an errant punt snap in the end zone for a special-teams score.

Kyle Brown accounted for the Bulldogs’ lone points on a 5-yard TD run.

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