Kadena Panthers

Track and field

Head coach — Reginald Winn, third season.

Key performers — Sharday Baker, Sr., sprints, relays, long jump, shot put; Neil Kentish, Jr., sprints, jumps; Alexzander Hye, So., sprints, jumps; D’Kylan Woods, Sr., sprints, relays; James Kinney, Sr., relays, middle distance; Jackson Jason, Sr., throws; Jerimiah Henley, Sr., relays, middle distance; Navoni Perry, Fr., sprints; Aniyah Daniels, Fr., sprints; Mia Bella Gonzalez, Sr., middle, long distance; Addison Schantz, Sr., hurdles, relays.

Outlook — Contending. Panthers are deep in all events. Watch out for Baker; she could threaten the nine-year-old Pacific records in the 100 and 200, and the Far East meet records in each event.


Head coach — Frank Macias, first season (coached previously at Matthew C. Perry).

Key performers — Drew Eaglin, Sr., P-1B-OF; Ty Lujan, So., IF-P; Hajime Reed, So., P-SS (transferred from Robert D. Edgren); Wainoi Mandac, Fr., C; Ethan Ferch, Fr., 3B-P (son of assistant coach Steven Ferch); Kai Redden, Fr., 2B-P.

Outlook — Somewhere in between. Much of the team plays club ball on Okinawa and some of the new players are not new to the game, having played travel ball elsewhere. Six or seven play baseball year round. Macias is a prior Far East Division II champion coach.


Head coach — Joy Sims, first season (previously coached at Daegu).

Key performers — Nao Grove, Jr., P; Aubrey Leidig, Fr., P; Emaleigh Appleton, Sr., C; Lia Connolly, Sr., 3B; Jada Wolfgang, Fr., SS; Ava Sims, Jr., OF; Ariani Mendoza, Jr., 2B.

Outlook — Somewhere in between. Panthers are on their fifth coach in five seasons, but one who knows the game. Many young players who are not new to the sport. Good mix of veteran blood and newbies. Losing reigning Far East D — I MVP Jessica Petruff (torn left ACL) and her twin sister Julia, the reigning Far East D-I best pitcher (torn elbow ligament), will not be easy to overcome, though they plan to be back next season.

Boys soccer

2023 season record — 15-2-1.

Head coach — Abe Summers, fifth season.

Key performers — Yoshua Whipp, Sr., MF (16 goals, 7 assists last season); Elijah Whipp, So., MF (13 goals, 10 assists); Tyler Smith, Sr., F (22 goals, 5 assists); Tuck Renquist, Sr., MF; Derek Vaden, Jr., MF; Noa Barrett, Sr., def.; Erik Puterbaugh, Sr., D; Frank Stare, MF (22 goals; transferred from Kubasaki); Calvin Paguada, MF (transferred from Spain); Jelani McGhee, Fr., D.

Outlook — Contending. Eight of 11 players return. Stare is a huge gain for the Panthers, as is Paguada, who played as a freshman for Kadena. The Whipp brothers played for Paragon FC in Maryland before transferring last year to Kadena. The veteran Panthers remember the heartbreak of losing the Far East D-I final at Kinnick and are hoping to take the final step up.

Girls soccer

2023 season record — 3-5.

Head coach — Joey Wood, third season.

Key performers — Marina Sawyer, Sr., MF (4 goals); Brooke Brewer, So., def.; Sydney Pontious, Jr., MF; Yume Catlett, Sr., MF; Emma Simpson, Jr., D; Emmah Strong, Jr., D.

Outlook — Somewhere in between. Wood feels the team is much more cohesive with more energy than in 2023.

Kubasaki Dragons

Track and field

Head coach — Joshua McCall, first season (has coached for more than 20 years)

Key performers — Carlos Cadet, Jr., hurdles, jumps; Haustyn Lunsford, Jr., sprints; Brennan Hall, Jr., throws; Joachim Killan, Sr., distance; Ryan Hater, So., distance; Isabella Suber, So., hurdles; Kenya Jones, Sr., hurdles; Gwen Pantaleon, Sr., sprints, relays; Peyton Wilcox, Fr., sprints; La’Chasity Weathers, Fr., sprints.

Outlook — Contending. Like the Panthers, the Dragons have depth and experience, and newcomers such as Wilcox and Weathers have speed to burn. It could be a battle royal between the Dragons, Panthers, Nile C. Kinnick and Tokyo-area international schools for the Far East D-I school championship.


Head coaches — Aaron Fisk, first season (previously coached and still teaches at Kadena).

Key performers — Luka Koja, Jr., P-C-OF; Lukas Gaines, Jr., SS-P; Roman Leal, Sr., C; Brodie Romnek, Sr., 3B-SS-P; Asher Romnek, Fr., 2B-P; Jacy Fisk, Jr., 1B-OF; Camdon Fisk, Fr., OF.

Outlook — Contending. Built for now, built to last. Despite losing three core seniors, the Dragons do return a healthy cadre of veteran blood and welcome a handful of freshmen who have played the game, particularly Asher Romnek, who has played for a Japanese travel-level club team. Aaron Fisk, a most unlikely Kubasaki coach being a Kadena teacher, has watched the Dragons for years and knows what they have.


Head coach — Michael Cottrell, first season (has assisted the previous three years).

Key performers — Taylor Tobin, So., C; Samantha Diaz, So., OF-C; Cadence Vandentop, Jr., SS (transferred from States); Breslyn Weeks, Fr., P; Haley Brossard, So., 3B-P; Janelle Glade, Sr., 1B.

Outlook — Rebuilding. Tobin and Diaz the two key returners on a team that’s mostly underclassmen, with one senior (Glade). It’s going to take some time for some to develop, but the potential is there and Tobin is stepping into the leader role vacated by former four-year starting catcher Mia Vedsted.

Boys soccer

2023 season record — 6-4-1.

Head coach — Saleem Malik, first season.

Key performers — Matthew Yulee, Sr., F (15 goals); Jaden Oshana, Sr., MF; Owen Ruksc, Sr., GK.

Outlook — Rebuilding and currently waiting for injured starters to return. The Dragons have seven seniors who’ve been in the system. Losing Frank Stare and his 22 goals to transfer to Kadena will hurt.

Girls soccer

2023 season record — 18-0.

Head coach — Chris Eastman, fifth season.

Key performers — Lilyana Solano, Sr., MF; Sakura Lopez, Jr., F (13 goals); Solares Solano, Jr., F (36 goals); Amaya Schaffeld, So., F (11 goals); Isabella Garza, Sr., MF (transferred from Bahrain); Erika Samluk, Sr., D; Reighlyn Rissick, Jr., MF.

Outlook — Contending. Definitely in the running for back-to-back Far East D-I titles (though American School In Japan, among others, could have a voice in things).

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Dave Ornauer has been employed by or assigned to Stars and Stripes Pacific almost continuously since March 5, 1981. He covers interservice and high school sports at DODEA-Pacific schools and manages the Pacific Storm Tracker.

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