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MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan – Hayden Jardine did it on both sides of the ball Friday for American School In Japan.

The senior quarterback-free safety was 7-for-14 for 85 yards and a touchdown, ran for a score and picked off a pass as the Mustangs slogged through the mud at rain-drenched Eagles Field for a 20-10 comeback victory.

“It was a tough game,” longtime ASIJ coach John Seevers said. “We made a lot of mistakes, but we got the W. That’s what we came here for.”

While the scoreboard hasn’t been favoring the Eagles (0-3), who have been outscored 67-10, “the kids are playing great,” Edgren coach Michael Gros said. “The line is blocking a lot better, the defense is doing well. We’re improving.”

Edgren, which had not scored all season, surprised the Mustangs by seizing a short-lived 10-6 second-quarter lead.

Jardine threw a pass out of the end zone out of bounds; the officials ruled it a safety. Edgren got a short field on the ensuing kickoff and Mike Dzoba took advantage, running 40 yards for a score. Lewis Murphy scored two more on a broken play during the conversion and the Eagles were up by four at the half.

Jardine then rallied the Mustangs, scoring on a 1-yard sneak to cap a 67-yard drive. On the next possession, Jardine capped a 78-yard drive with an 11-yard pass to Sam Hopkins.

A Haru Kent blocked punt set up Ken Yajima’s 38-yard run for the game’s first touchdown.

Yajima finished with 101 yards on 14 carries, Kent had 72 yards on 11 attempts and intercepted a Sean Gammel pass. Henry Wallrapp had four sacks for 50 yards in losses.

For the Eagles, Keaton Lewis and Eric Ferrufino each had nine tackles, James Bowman, Lewis Murphy and Steve Wilder each recovered fumbles and Gammel picked off a Jardine pass.

Edgren next faces Zama American (1-2) at 5:30 p.m. Friday at Yokosuka Naval Base to determine Japan’s representative in the Far East Division II championship game Nov. 5 in Korea. ASIJ next hosts Yokota (4-0) at 6 p.m. Friday, a team that beat the Mustangs 41-20 on Sept. 16.

“We’re looking forward to that challenge,” Seevers said. “We’re excited about that, down in Mustang Valley.”


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