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Humphreys-Daegu will help determine host for D-II title game

By DAVE ORNAUER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: September 21, 2017

The Humphreys football team hopes that Friday will be the first step back toward its second straight appearance in the Far East Division II football title game.

Daegu hopes it will mark the first step in its return to a title game the Warriors last played two seasons ago.

No matter the outcome, Friday’s game pitting the Warriors at Humphreys at 6 p.m. at Blackhawks Field is layered with playoff implications. In fact, coaches on both teams say they recognize that almost every game from here on out means something.

“We know what’s at stake. We’ve gone over all the scenarios with all the players,” Daegu coach Blake Sims said.

“We understand the significance of the game,” Humphreys coach Steven Elliott said. “We had three really great practices this week. Now, we have to go out and execute as best we can.”

Whichever team wins the season series – the Blackhawks visit the Warriors on Oct. 20 in the teams’ second clash – or ends up with the higher point aggregate will host the Japan representative in the Far East D-II title game the weekend of Oct. 27-28. Korea hosts in odd-numbered years and Japan in even-numbered.

The Warriors need to cut down on penalties and miscues, Sims said. “Even little mistakes can hurt us in the end. Penalties hurt us the last two weeks,” he said.

While the fight begins for D-II host rights, Yokota continues its own march back to what it hopes is a return engagement in the final when the Panthers host Zama at 6 p.m. Friday. Yokota played in and lost the D-II final at Daegu two years ago.

Saturday sees a pair of afternoon games with the top two spots in the Division I standings still up for grabs.

Defending Far East D-I champion American School In Japan, 1-2 with a two-game losing streak, hosts Kubasaki, winless in four tries, including two D-I games. Seoul American begins its D-I schedule when it travels to Kadena, 3-0 overall and 2-0 in D-I. Kickoffs are at 1 p.m.

ornauer.dave@stripes.com

Twitter: @ornauer_stripes

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