(See scoreboard at end of story)
Myron Marshall rambled 40 yards on the first play and Ryan Ford converted the extra point — the only score Guam High would need on Friday night. The defense held from there as the Panthers broke a two-game Interscholastic Football League losing streak 7-2 at John F. Kennedy.
Marshall’s was the first TD scored by a Panthers running back this season.
“We needed depth at running back,” coach Brandon Miller said of a spate of injuries that sidelined quarterback Paul Craimins, among others, forcing the Panthers to use their third-string quarterback Torus Washington.
Marshall, nominally a cornerback, “has that breakaway speed, and he showed it tonight,” Miller said.
The Panthers (3-3) tied the school record for most regular-season victories (2003, 2005), and recorded their first season sweep of the Islanders (2-4).
In Japan, homecoming proved happy once more for Edgren (3-2), which pounded Zama 39-14 behind Jacque Moton’s four rushing TDs, avenging a 20-19 loss suffered at Camp Zama on Sept. 14.
Donavan Brown, subbing for injured Tyree Hunt, ran for three TDs as Kinnick (2-3) kept American School In Japan winless in three games with a 28-7 victory.
GuamGuam High 7, John F. Kennedy 2: At Upper Tumon, Marshall’s run served as the biggest play in a contest played in soggy conditions at JFK’s Ramsey Field.
“It was ugly, but it was a ‘W’,” Miller said. “We’ve matched last year’s total, and we’re planning on exceeding past that.”
It might have been more lopsided, had not a 78-yard punt-return touchdown by Chris Brown and Marshall’s 49-yard rushing TD been called back due to penalties.
What pleased Miller most, he said, was the play of the defense. Guam did not allow the Islanders to score an offensive point in their two meetings; Guam beat JFK 23-0 in the Sept. 1 opener.
“Defense wins championships, and they’re coming through,” Miller said of a unit he’s nicknamed the “Terror Dome.” “Once we get some guys healthy, and we’ve got a new running back, the sky’s the limit.”
JFK’s points came on a third-quarter safety, when Craimins was tackled in the end zone by tackle Ed San Nicolas.
JapanEdgren 39, Zama 14: At Misawa Air Base, Edgren won its third straight homecoming, its sixth straight home game and its seventh in 10 games overall — its best stretch in eight seasons.
Coach Chris Waite credited the first of those three homecoming victories, 17-14 over Zama in 2005, for the team’s turnaround.
“We hadn’t won a homecoming in five years,” Waite said. “We had 15 players and a bunch of people watching on the sideline, and they saw those players jumping around all excited, and it inspired others to become a part of it.”
Moton ran for first-half touchdowns of 50 and 60 yards, then added scoring runs of 3 and 40 in the second half. Matt Salazar caught a 45-yard touchdown pass from Zach Latimore, and Brandon Massie booted a 32-yard field goal for the Eagles.
The Trojans got all their points in the final quarter, a 1-yard run by Jacorian Winters and a last-minute 40-yard scamper by Jon Tolliver. He led the Trojans with 80 yards on 19 carries, Ken Johnson added 64 on 12 attempts and Emanuel Sloan 60 yards on nine tries.
“Same old stuff,” Zama coach Steven Merrell said. “We have to work on fundamentals, we have to improve on those things. A lot of defensive things, and the offense didn’t enjoy the success that it’s had.”
Kinnick 28, ASIJ 7: At Yokosuka Naval Base, Brown rushed 24 times for 134 yards, including touchdown runs of 15, 4 and 9 yards. He added two returns for 75 yards in a game in which the Red Devils dressed just 19 players due to injuries and ineligibilities.
“We played with a skeleton crew and made a game of it,” coach Gary Wilson said. “We had a couple of key picks, a few fumble recoveries and took advantage. Through all the adversity, the kids played great.”
Chris Alexander played both ways, getting 42 yards and a 17-yard TD run on nine carries plus 10 tackles at linebacker. Quarterback Jon Bollinger was 3-for-13 for 23 yards, all to Chad Atchley.
Dennis Ray, Grant Rodgers and Bollinger each came up with drive-stopping interceptions. Kinnick recorded six sacks and nine tackles for losses.