(Weekend roundup at bottom of story.)

After two years of playing as a youth services entity, the Misawa Cougars have morphed into the Edgren Eagles, a full-fledged high school baseball program.

They celebrated by capturing two of three games in a two-day swing through the Tokyo area, beating St. Mary’s International 4-2, then splitting a pair with 2002 Japan Baseball League champion Yokota, falling 9-8 before taking a 7-6 victory in the nightcap.

All that came after not having practiced or played outdoors because of snowfall that has plagued Misawa Air Base all month. The only practice they had was with rubber balls inside a gymnasium.

“It was worth the long ride to finally get out of the gym and onto a field,” coach John Cannon said.

Traveling with just 11 players, and losing one, second baseman Randy Johnson, to an ankle injury against St. Mary’s, the Eagles still initiated themselves nicely in their opening games.

Leading the way was senior catcher Matt Beard, who batted .636 for the weekend with six RBIs and six runs scored.

“Matt is starting off where he left off last year," when he batted .667, said assistant coach Matt Krueger, who coached the Cougars the past two seasons. "Matt really drove the ball well and drove in clutch runs. He also caught two spectacular games."

Krueger’s son, Bryan, a junior, pitched a complete game with 13 strikeouts to beat St. Mary’s, and he picked up the save in the victory over Yokota by striking out the side in the seventh inning.

“Our kids really came together as a team, both offensively and defensively,” Cannon said. “We’re very happy with this weekend’s outcome.”

Weekend roundup


Yokota 9, Edgren 8

The Panthers (3-3) scored twice in the bottom of the seventh to win the first game of a Japan Baseball League twin bill. Nathan Haney had three hits, including a homer, and went the distance for the win. Rick Bernowski and Shawn Novak also had three hits for Yokota. Matt Beard was 3-for-4 with two RBIs and Kelly O’Connor 2-for-5 with an RBI for the Eagles (2-1).

Edgren 7, Yokota 6

Craig Burgess started for the first time in his life and gave up two runs and two hits in 4 1/3 innings. Bryan Krueger struck out the side in the seventh for the save. Matt Beard went 3-for-3, scored three times and drove in two runs. James Ritton had two hits and Nathan Haney homered again for Yokota.

Edgren 4, St. Mary’s International 2

In the Eagles’ first-ever game as a high school squad after two years as a youth services entity, Bryan Krueger fanned 13 batters and gave up two walks, two earned runs and three hits. Randy Johnson batted 3-for-4 and Mike Bernard went 2-for-3 with a double for the Eagles.

St. Mary’s International 16, Yokota 8

The Panthers began a gruelling weekend of two doubleheaders in two days by giving up 11 runs in the fourth inning to the Titans (4-0). Alex Nomura batted 4-for-4 for St. Mary’s, while Jason Correll had two hits for Yokota.

St. Mary’s International 7, Yokota 6

Alex Nomura and Aki Ando each collected three hits as the Titans edged the Panthers in the nightcap to complete a sweep of the twin bill. Shawn Novak took the loss and had two hits, as did Jason Barajas, for Yokota.

Zama American 16, Matthew C. Perry 1, 5 inn., mercy rule

The Trojans (3-1) banged out 13 hits and poured 15 runs across in the final two innings of the Japan Baseball League season-opener for the Samurai (0-1). Ben Walters pitched the first three innings for the win and Nick Villasana and Allison Amara finished the final two innings. Ryan Mohler took the loss. Rain washed out Saturday’s scheduled rematch.

Girls soccer

Kinnick 5, Edgren 1

Robyn Hopp scored a first-half hat trick , Alexis Zukowski converted a penalty kick and added two assists and Lisa Murray knocked in a PK for the Red Devils (3-1). Lindsay Murchison got the lone goal for the Eagles (2-2) on a first-half penalty kick.

Zama American 2, Edgren 1

Elli Legaspi and Yvonne Castillones each tallied for the Trojans (3-0-3) in a game shortened to 40 minutes. Jennifer Gallacher scored the lone goal for the Eagles, assisted by Jessica Allibone.

Kubasaki 4, Naha-nishi 2

Erin Foote posted a natural hat trick, with goals in the ninth, 29th and 40th minutes, for the defending Far East Class AA Dragons (2-1). Julie Davis capped Kubasaki’s scoring in the 68th minute and goalkeeper Debra Kinzley stopped 12 shots.

Naha-nishi 4, Kadena Panthers 1

Naha-nishi, a Japanese team, sandwiched pairs of goals in the 25th and 35th minutes and 60th and 65th minutes around the lone score by the Panthers (3-1), by Dianne Able in the 50th, assisted by Katie LaGrave.

Guam High 3, Simon Sanchez 0

The Panthers completed an 11-0 regular season and earned the first seed in the island playoffs starting Monday. Valene Taguacta posted a pair of goals, one off a corner kick by Christine Chop and the other assisted by Christine Ortiz, giving her 15 for the season. Ortiz has 10 assists and Chop eight on the campaign. Annie Bell notched her first goal of the season from 25 yards out.

Boys soccer

Naha-nishi 6, Kubasaki Dragons 0

The defending Far East Class AA (large schools) Tournament champion held the No. 6-rated team in Japan scoreless in the first half before tiring in the second and suffering their first defeat in two matches this season.

Naha-nishi 4, Kadena Panthers 0

The Panthers (1-2) fell to the No. 6-rated team in Japan, giving up two goals in the first 30 minutes, in their tune-up for Monday’s Okinawa High School Athletic Association showdown with the defending Far East Class AA (large schools) Tournament champion Kubasaki Dragons.

Kubasaki Shogun 4, Kubasaki Samurai 2

author picture
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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