Osan girls repeat soccer title; Perry boys end drought
They needed to win four straight matches to seize the title in the cold and rain last year. On Thursday, the Osan American girls left nothing to chance.
Kylee Russell, Courtney Ouellette and Angela Frisby each scored in the first 10 minutes, powering the Cougars to a 4-0 shutout of Robert D. Edgren, their second straight Far East Class A soccer title and a Pacific-record sixth in school history.
“I’m pleased,” coach Sung Plourde said. “Our goal was to defend our title and we came through. All the hard work paid off.”
Unlike last year, when the Cougars played and won four matches in nine hours in dreary conditions, Osan needed just one victory at sun bathed Camp Walker’s Kelly Field to seize the crown.
And once more, Osan gained redemption for a subpar performance in last month’s Korean-American Interscholastic Activities Conference Division I tournament, in which the Cougars took third.
“I told the team before the tournament, let’s see if you can come back,” Plourde said. “They had determination and they came through.”
It was Edgren’s second title match loss in four years.
While Plourde basked in yet another celebration, his old Robertson High teammate in Tampa, Fla., Perry coach Mark Lange, was enjoying his team’s first boys Class A title and the Samurai’s first Far East championship of any kind since boys Class A basketball in 1996.
“I can’t believe it. Fantastic,” Lange said after Andre Bugawan scored his Pacific-leading 36th and 37th goals of the season to boost Perry past Morrison Christian Academy of Taiwan 3-1 at Samurai Field.
“The kids responded to pressure. We came into this tournament with a target on our backs. We thought we had a chance. It was a matter of doing it, and the kids came through.”
Perry finished the finest season in school history with a Pacific-best 27-8-3 record, having won 50 of 56 halves in full 40-minute 11-on-11 matches, Lange said.
While Lange won Perry’s first soccer title, left-hander Desirae Seals and Kadena’s girls softball team made history of their own Thursday, winning the inaugural Far East tournament by routing Edgren 22-9 at Kadena Air Base’s Four Diamonds Complex.
Seals, named the tournament’s MVP, was touched for 14 hits but didn’t walk a batter and struck out five in a complete game effort. She helped herself at the plate, going 2-for-5 with a double and a stolen base.
“It’s the girls. The girls did it. They earned every minute of that win,” Panthers coach Jesse Costa said, adding it was doubly sweet for her seven seniors.
“This has been a long time coming. For us to win it, especially for the seniors, it’s extremely rewarding, gratifying and very special for us.”
For Eagles coach Sarah Richardson, it was her fourth time being denied a Far East title in a championship game. She coached Edgren to two Class AA basketball finales, as well as a penalty-kick shootout loss to Osan in 2006.
On the pitch, for the first time in the girls Class AA tournament’s 12-year history, no Okinawa team will play for the championship.
Host Kubasaki lost 2-1 to Faith Academy and will miss the title match for the first time since 2006.
Gloria Patterson’s fourth goal helped Seoul American edge Hong Kong International in Thursday’s other semifinal at Mike Petty Stadium.
Faith and Seoul are scheduled to kick off at 3 p.m. Friday.
Kadena reached its first boys Class AA final since 2007, getting a goal from Nick Rogers in overtime to edge Faith 3-2 at Seoul American’s Sims Field.
The Panthers face last year’s runner-up, Hong Kong International, a 2-0 winner over Kubasaki in the other semifinal, at 5 p.m. Friday.