(Wednesday's tennis and volleyball results at end of story)
Rebekkah Claudio could have stayed at home and rested her fractured left wrist, which she injured last weekend.
Yet there she was on Wednesday, opening day of the Far East High School Tennis Tournament at Kadena Air Base’s Risner Tennis Complex, racket in right hand, playing three matches: two singles, one doubles.
“I just love to play tennis,” said Claudio, a senior and captain of Matthew C. Perry’s team.
Claudio, who is right-handed, fell and fractured her left wrist during a weekend tournament at Iwakuni Marine Corps Air Station. She had a cast put on it and continued playing.
“It’s my last year, and I know I’ll never play tennis again, except for fun,” Claudio said of her determination to make the Far East trip. “No way was I going to pass this up.”
Coach Shawn Ryan said he spoke with Claudio’s family and “they felt comfortable” letting her go to Far East.
Claudio won her first-round match and lost in the second round of the girls singles draw, and got knocked out in the first round of girls doubles, teaming with Sarah Leach.
It took some adjusting for Claudio to play with a cast. Two-handed backhand shots were out, as was tossing the ball airborne to serve. “I learned to do a one-handed backhand in three practices” before Far East, Claudio said. She served underhand, holding the racket and soft-tossing the ball with her left hand.
She also garnered a lot of attention away from the court.
“Everybody was asking me, ‘Are you playing? With that?’” Claudio said.
“She was looking forward to coming,” Ryan said. “She had her heart set on playing. She’s the team captain. For her to play through that, that makes an impression.”
It certainly did on one of her teammates.
“She’s my hero,” Branden Thompson said. “She’s my inspiration. If she can do it with one arm, anybody can do it with two. That’s some heart right there.”
Unusual Kubasaki ceiling an issue for some on Okinawa
Organizers of the Class AA Volleyball Tournament went scrambling when told three days before the tournament that one of four venues — Foster Field House — was needed as a backup facility in case it rained for Wednesday’s Marine Corps 229th Birthday celebration.
Host Kadena High School turned to neighboring Kubasaki, which made its two courts available — along with its unusual ceiling, low-hanging basketball support posts and morning sun glaring through the windows.
“It was either Kubasaki or play late afternoon and night” at Foster Field House, which was unavailable until after 2 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, said tournament organizer Brian Hill. “We didn’t have a choice.”
It took time, however, for teams to adjust to Kubasaki Gym’s quirks. The Z-shaped ceiling angled right over the center of the two courts, with many a bump or set striking the ceiling, then falling at unplayable angles.
Balls also have hit basketball support struts, which were retracted as high as possible but still hung close to the courts. By agreement between referees and coaches, automatic replays were called whenever a ball struck overhanging bars, backboards and rims.
And the morning sun shone right in the eyes of teams facing the east side of the gym during 8 a.m. matches.
“It took some time ... but the girls adjusted very well,” said coach Bonnie Seeley of Japan’s Yokota Panthers, playing there for the first time.
Since 1982, Kubasaki’s gym has played host to 13 Class AA tournaments. Seoul American coach Denny Hilgar, who has attended each of them, said, “You focus on the opponent on the other side of the net. Part of preparation is to look and see what you might run into, the markings on the floor, the sunlight. Everything’s 50-50. Everybody’s at the same disadvantage. That’s part of the allure of Dragon Gym. I love this gym.”
Given a choice between playing from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. or from 4 p.m. until midnight, Seeley said the tournament made the “smart, wise decision.”
“Every gym has something,” she said, adding that after getting used to the place Tuesday, the girls felt comfortable playing there Wednesday. “To me, it felt better that we were coming here. It didn’t bother me.”
“For the most part,” Hill said, “coaches have been understanding. It’s not the best situation, but they’re making do.”
Play resumed at spacious Foster Field House on Thursday. Kadena High and O’Connor Gym on Kadena Air Base also hosted matches during the week.
Volleyball and much more for spikers at Sasebo
There’s no shortage of things for teams and players to do at the Class A Volleyball Tournament, being hosted for the first time at Sasebo Naval Base, Japan. And at least one coach is singing the praises of the school and community because of it.
In addition to the five-day combined round-robin and double-elimination tournament, organizers planned a bevy of other activities to keep players active long after the final whistles blew and games ended each day.
Navy Morale, Welfare and Recreation came through with a bowling night on Monday and a teen center movie and game night on Tuesday.
Players were given a chance to leave the base and visit Kashimae Pier, near Sasebo, for a museum and boat tour between the end of round-robin play and the start of the playoffs.
A USO movie was on tap for Thursday and a local shopping tour planned for Friday, after the 11 a.m. championship match and 5 p.m. closing ceremony.
“The school and community have really rolled out the red carpet for us,” said Osan American coach Brian Swenty. “First class and five-star, all the way.”
Far East Tournaments
At Risner Tennis Complex,
Kadena Air Base, Okinawa
Allen Chin, Seoul American, def. Jeff Fenimore, Guam High, 8-1; James Edwards, Pusan American, def. Nathan Fine, Robert D. Edgren, 8-6; Justin Acap, Yokota, def. Ronnie Maston, Kubasaki, 8-0; Jae Kwan Park, Pusan American, def. Jason Stroup, Matthew C. Perry, 8-2; Sung Am Kim, Taegu American, def. Matthew Shakespeare, Zama American, 8-3; John Cruz, E.J. King, def. Rikki Winger, Osan American, 8-6; Jeff Wilson, Zama American, def. Lawrence Song, Osan American, 8-5; Hyun Min Kim, Taegu American, def. Noah Debonis, Robert D. Edgren, 8-1; Eric Su, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Tim McFarland, Kubasaki, 8-5; Chris Allison, Matthew C. Perry, def. Michael Que, Guam High, 8-5
Edwards def. Travis Dang, Kadena, 8-0; Anthony Soroka, Kadena, def. Park 8-2; Kenta Takahashi, Yokota, def. Cruz 8-3; Chin def. J.P. Encomienda, E.J. King, 8-1; H. Kim def. Wilson 8-3; John Will, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Acap 8-3; S. Kim def. Su 8-5
Thomas Harwell and Patrick Hayes, Robert D. Edgren, def. Tim McFarland and Ronnie Maston, Kubasaki, 8-2; Thomas Kim and Allen Chin, Seoul American, def. Matthew Shakespeare and Jeff Wilson, Zama American, 8-1; Lawrence Song and Matthew Guertin, Osan American, def. Noah Debonis and Nathan Fine, Robert D. Edgren, 8-1; Kenta Takahashi and Justin Acap, Yokota, def. John Craig and Caleb Bales, Kubasaki, 8-0; J.P. Encomienda and Jhan Ongoco, E.J. King, def. Joey Chop and Wade Williams, Guam High, 8-5; John Will and Eric Su, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Jeff Fenimore and Michael Que, Guam High, 8-5; Chris Allison and Jason Stroup, Matthew C. Perry, def. Brad Roh and Hyun Min Kim, Taegu American, 8-4; Rikki Winger and Andrew Park, Osan American, def. Ken Brophy and Daniel Adamson, Yokota, 8-4; Neil Suther and Brandon Thompson, Matthew C. Perry, def. Joey Oyen and Jae Kwan Park, Pusan American, 8-5
John Cruz and Mark Bote, E.J. King, def. Harwell and Hayes 8-4; Chris Suh and Justin Lee, Seoul American, def. Allison and Stroup 8-3; Anthony Soroka and Kamen Christin, Kadena, def. Winger and Park 8-0; Takahashi and Acap def. Sung Am Kim and Thomas Qian, Taegu American, 8-3; Travis Dang and Ian Copeland, Kadena, def. Suther and Thompson 8-1; Will and Su def. E.J. Lustina and Paul Fenoglio, Zama American, 8-5; Chris Morris and Marc Icban, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Encomienda and Ongoco 9-7
Hannah Kim, Seoul American, def. Tori Lee, Robert D. Edgren, walkover; Lori Kanikkeberg, Kadena, def. Tomomi Ida, Yokota, 8-2; Joyce Cao, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Victoria Salas, Guam High, 8-4; Frances Delossantos, Kubasaki, def. Caroline Armstrong, Osan American, 8-5; Jin McBride, Taegu American, def. Sarah Leach, Matthew C. Perry, 8-3; Rebekka Claudio, Matthew C. Perry, def. Amber Kers, Robert D. Edgren, 8-1; Aimeelyn Deleon, Zama American, def. Iris Kim, Taegu American, score unavailable; Kim Flores, Kubasaki, def. Abby Bayquen, E.J. King, 8-0; Angela Kannik, Seoul American, def. Janel Borja, Guam High, 8-3
Mary Edwards, Pusan American, def. McBride 8-0; Amy Lopes, Kadena, def. Flores 8-0; Kannik def. Deleon 8-0; Kanikkeberg def. Kristia Suriben, E.J. King, 8-1; Elizabeth Trambulo, Zama American, def. Cao, score unavailable; Delossantos def. Hannah Kim, Seoul American, 8-6; Kristina DeLeon, Yokota, def. Claudio 8-0; Amanda Reiff, Osan American, def. Rhea Fernandez, Nile C. Kinnick, 8-2
Cindy Armstrong and Jennifer Lew, Osan American, def. Rebekkah Claudio and Sarah Leach, Matthew C. Perry, score unavailable; Janel Borja and Victoria Salas, Guam High, def. Joyce Cao and Rhea Fernandez, Nile C. Kinnick, 9-8 (7-3); Kim Flores and Frances Delossantos, Kubasaki, def. Danielle Porter and Cocoa Osaki, Yokota, 8-5; Angela Kannik and Hannah Kim, Seoul American, def. Jemari Nimedez and Abby Bayquen, E.J. King, 8-3; Katherine Otterson and Tarren Fitzgerald, Kadena, def. Kristina DeLeon and Tomomi Ida, Yokota, 8-3; Brittany Gehrke and Bekka Lemons, Guam High, def. Jessica Brooks and Kylie Mostert, Robert D. Edgren, 8-3; Iris Kim and Hana Gill, Taegu American, def. Leilani Arita and Elizabeth Perry, Matthew C. Perry, 8-4
Elizabeth Trambulo and Cristina Eustaquio, Zama American, def. Otterson and Fitzgerald 8-3; Amanda Reiff and Jessica Guertin, Osan American, def. Roxanne Diaz and Kendra Robinson, Kubasai, 8-0; Airamy Rivera and Katherine Herrera, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Gehrke and Lemons 8-0; Amy Lopes and Lori Kanikkeberg, Kadena, def. Aimeelyn Deleon and Pauline Jesusa, Zama American, 8-0; Borja and Sales def. Jin McBride and Joanne Youngblood, Taegu American, 8-2; Lara Deguzman and Kristia Suriben, E.J. King, def. Armstrong and Lew 8-5; Kannik and Kim def. Nimedez and Bayquen 8-0; Flores and Delossantos def. Jackie McGinn and Lisa Choi, Seoul American, 8-4
James Edweards and Mary Edwards, Pusan American, def. Caleb Bales and Kendra Robinson, Kubasaki, 8-0; Justin Lee and Jackie McGinn, Seoul American, def. Ian Copeland and Katherine Otterson, Kadena, 8-2; Brad Roh and Joanne Youngblood, Taegu American, def. Daniel Adamson and Cocoa Osaki, Yokota, 8-5; E.J. Lustina and Pauline Jesusa, Zama American, def. John Craig and Roxanne Diaz, Kubasaki, 8-4; Thomas Harwell and Jessica Brooks, Robert D. Edgren, def. Branden Thompson and Elizabeth Perry, Matthew C. Perry, 8-1; Marc Icban and Katherine Herrera, Nile C. Kinnick, def. Joey Chop and Brittany Gehrke, Guam High, score unavailable; Neil Suther and Leilani Arita, Matthew C. Perry, def. Thomas Qian and Hana Gill, Taegu American, 8-6; Ken Brophy and Danielle Porter, Yokota, def. Andrew Park and Jennifer Lew, Osan American, 8-4
Edwards and Edwards def. Chris Morris and Airamy Rivera, Nile C. Kinnick, 8-2; Matthew Guertin and Jessica Guertin, Osan American, def. Harwell and Brooks 8-1; Kamen Christin and Katherine Otterson, Kadena, def. Brophy and Porter 8-5; Mark Bote and Lara Deguzman, E.J. King, def. Icban and Herrera 8-5; Patrick Hayes and Kylie Mostert, Robert D. Edgren, def. Suther and Arita 9-7; Chris Suh and Lisa Choi, Seoul American, def. Lustina and Jesusa 8-2; Roh and Youngblood def. Paul Fenoglio and Cristina Eustaquio, Zama American 8-0; Lee and McGinn def. Jhan Ongoco and Jemari Nimedez, E.J. King, 8-4
Class AA Girls Volleyball
At Camp Foster, Okinawa
Match 1—Southern, Guam, def. Nile C. Kinnick, Japan, 25-19, 25-9, 25-18
Match 2—Yokota, Japan, def. Kubasaki, Okinawa, 25-13, 25-17, 25-19
Match 3—George Washington, Guam, def. John F. Kennedy, Guam, 25-18, 25-23, 21-25, 25-16
Match 4—Seoul American def. Guam High 25-21, 25-19, 25-11
Match 5—American School In Japan, Tokyo, def. Robert D. Edgren, Japan, 25-19, 25-13, 25-9
Match 6—Seisen International, Tokyo, def. Simon Sanchez, Guam, 25-13, 25-19, 25-16
Match 7—Christian Academy In Japan, Tokyo, def. Kadena, Okinawa, 25-8, 25-9, 25-13
Match 8—Academy of Our Lady, Guam, def. Zama American, Japan, 25-12, 25-9, 25-17
Match 9—Edgren def. JFK 25-16, 21-25, 25-16, 25-15
Match 10—Guam High def. Simon Sanchez 16-25, 25-19, 25-17, 26-24
Match 11—Kinnick def. Kadena 25-14, 19-25, 25-20, 25-16
Match 12—Kubasaki def. Zama American 25-20, 25-20, 25-19
Match 13—American School In Japan vs. George Washington
Match 14—Academy of Our Lady vs. Yokota
Match 15—Seisen International vs. Seoul American
Match 16—Christian Academy In Japan vs. Southern
Match 17—Nile C. Kinnick vs. Match 14 loser
Match 18—Robert D. Edgren vs. Match 15 loser
Match 19—Kubasaki vs. Match 16 loser
Match 20—Guam High vs. Match 13 loser
Match 21—John F. Kennedy vs. Kadena
Match 22—Simon Sanchez vs. Zama American
Match 23—Match 17 loser vs. Match 18 loser
Match 24—Match 19 loser vs. Match 20 loser
Match 25—Match 17 winner vs. Match 18 winner
Match 26—Match 19 winner vs. Match 20 winner
Match 27—Match 23 loser vs. Match 24 loser (11th and 12th place)
Match 28—Match 21 loser vs. Match 22 loser (15th and 16th place)
Match 29—Match 21 winner vs. Match 22 winner (13th and 14th place)
Match 30—Match 23 winner vs. Match 24 winner (9th and 10th place)
Match 31—Match 14 winner vs. Match 15 winner
Match 32—Match 13 winner vs. Match 16 winner
Match 33—Match 25 loser vs. Match 26 loser (7th and 8th place)
Match 34—Match 25 winner vs. Match 26 winner (5th and 6th place)
Match 35—Match 31 loser vs. Match 32 loser (3rd and 4th place)
Match 36—Match 31 winner vs. Match 32 winner (championship and 2nd place)
Southern def. Nile C. Kinnick 25-19, 25-9, 25-18
Spike kills—Southern, Julianna Delos Reyes 5. Service aces—Southern, Julianna Delos Reyes 4. Defensive digs—Kinnick, Mariko Wood 4. Block points—Kinnick, Katie Wilkinson 3.
Yokota def. Kubasaki 25-13, 25-17, 25-19
Spike kills—Kubasaki, Rachel Roberts 4, Erin Foote 4.
George Washington def. John F. Kennedy 25-18, 25-23, 21-25, 25-16
Block points—JFK, Colleen Flores 6, Hilary Blas 4.
Seoul American def. Guam High 25-21, 25-19, 25-11
Spike kills—Seoul, Rachel Miller 7, Sheriah Taua 8.
American School In Japan def. Robert D. Edgren 25-19, 25-13, 25-9
Spike kills—ASIJ, Adrienne Hughes 6.
Seisen International def. Simon Sanchez 25-13, 25-19, 25-16
Spike kills—Seisen, Yuri Koshibe 9; Teresa Molina 5.
Christian Academy In Japan def. Kadena 25-8, 25-9, 25-13
Spike kills—CAJ, Kelsey Masuda 7. Defensive digs—Kadena, Rossini Alba 4.
Academy of Our Lady def. Zama American 25-12, 25-9, 25-17
Spike kills—Academy, Melissa Dayson 5, Emma Gillan 4, Cassandra McFadden 4. Service aces—Academy, Emma Gillan 4.
Robert D. Edgren def. John F. Kennedy 25-16, 21-25, 25-16, 25-15
Spike kills—Edgren, Arlie Boera 6.
Guam High def. Simon Sanchez 16-25, 25-19, 25-17, 26-24
Spike kills—Guam High, Sarah Bushong 4. Defensive digs—Guam High, Maryann Riano 4. Noteworthy—First win in eight-year school history for Panthers over Sharks.
Nile C. Kinnick def. Kadena 25-14, 19-25, 25-20, 25-16
Kubasaki def. Zama American 25-20, 25-20, 25-19
Spike kills—Kubasaki, Erin Foote 9, Rachel Roberts 6.
Class A Girls Volleyball
At Sasebo Naval Base, Japan
Day 1 Round-Robin Standings
(listed in order of tiebreakers)
Osan American, South Korea, 12-4
Taegu American, South Korea, 12-4
Morrison Christian Academy, Taiwan, 11-5
Notre Dame, Guam, 11-5
Faith Academy, Philippines, 11-5
Pusan American, South Korea, 6-10
Fukuoka International, Japan, 5-11
E.J. King, Japan, 4-12
Matthew C. Perry, Japan, 0-16
Notre Dame def. Osan American 25-17; Osan American def. Notre Dame 25-19
Taegu American def. Matthew C. Perry 25-16, 25-15
Match 1—E.J. King, Japan, def. Matthew C. Perry, Japan, 26-24, 25-19, 25-13
Match 2—Notre Dame, Guam, def. Faith Academy, Philippines, 25-15, 25-21, 25-14
Match 3—Morrison Christian Academy, Taiwan, def. Pusan American, South Korea, 25-19, 25-6, 25-19
Match 4—Taegu American, South Korea, def. Fukuoka International, Japan, 25-21, 25-19, 25-13
Match 5—Osan American, South Korea, vs. E.J. King
Match 6—Matthew C. Perry vs. Fukuoka International
Match 7—Pusan American vs. Match 5 loser
Match 8—Faith Academy vs. Match 6 winner
Match 9—Notre Dame vs. Match 5 winner
Match 10—Morrison Christian Academy vs. Taegu American
Match 11—Match 7 winner vs. Match 9 loser
Match 12—Match 8 winner vs. Match 10 loser
Match 13—Match 9 winner vs. Match 10 winner
Match 14—Match 11 winner vs. Match 12 winner
Match 15—Match 13 loser vs. Match 14 winner
Match 16—Match 13 winner vs. Match 15 winner
Match 17—Match 13 winner vs. Match 15 winner, if Match 13 winner loses Match 16
E.J. King def. Matthew C. Perry 26-24, 25-19, 25-13
Spike kills—E.J. King, Elicia Castro 5 in 14 attempts. Service aces—E.J. King, Carrie Cucueco 7, Yvette Cuaycong 5. Assists—E.J. King, Yvette Cuaycong 11; Perry, Brittany Scott 20, Dayna Garland 12. Digs—E.J. King, Cassie Tumbado 7; Perry, Le Nieca 6, Inna Chavez 5.
Notre Dame def. Faith Academy 25-15, 25-21, 25-14
Spike kills—Faith, Kelly Youngman 6 in 15 attempts, Bethany Bauck 6 in 12 attempts, Ashley Kuhlow 5 in 15 attempts. Digs—Faith, Ashley Kuhlow 10, Bethany Bauck 8, Beka Ruiz 6.
Morrison Christian Academy def. Pusan American 25-19, 25-6, 25-19
Spike kills—Morrison, Erica Garrido 7 in 17 attempts, Brandy Dickman 6 in 14 attempts, Alana McKinlay 5 in 16 attempts. Service aces—Morrison, Heather Craker 6, Erica Garrido 5. Assists—Morrison, Heather Craker 21.
Taegu American def. Fukuoka International 25-21, 25-19, 25-13
Spike kills—Taegu, Kelli Cox 14 in 24 attempts, Lynette Grant 7 in 16 attempts, Ashley Gooch 7 in 19 attempts, Tina Wojtonik 6 in 10 attempts. Assists—Taegu, Lindsey Jackson 27; Fukuoka, Emi Saza 11, Kalin Lawrence 10.
Dave Ornauer/Stars and Stripes
Senior middle blocker Rachel Miller (6) of the Seoul American Falcons spikes over the block of Guam High Panthers senior Sarah Bushong (21) during Wednesday’s single-elimination playoff match in the Far East Class AA Volleyball Tournament at Kubasaki High School, Camp Foster, Okinawa. The Falcons won 25-21, 25-19, 25-11.
Dave Ornauer/Stars and Stripes
Kadena Panthers senior Kamen Christin hits a two-handed backhand during boys doubles play Wednesday in the Far East Tennis Tournament at Risner Tennis Complex, Kadena Air Base, Okinawa. Christin and senior teammate Anthony Soroka beat Rikki Winger and Andrew Park of Korea’s Osan American Cougars 8-0.