Different lineup, same result.
For the second straight year and the fourth time in eight years, Matthew C. Perry’s Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps unit has captured the DODEA-Pacific Far East Marksmanship competition earlier this month at Osan Air Base in South Korea.
And for the second straight year, the Samurai Battalion featured an all-girls marksmanship unit, but with two new additions: Sophomore Autumn Hendra and junior Jasmine Griffin stepped into the lineup for two graduated seniors.
“They stepped up into the role and filled in nicely,” said the marksmanship unit’s coach, Brad Cramer.
Hendra, Griffin, junior Siyennah Igmen, senior Jessica Griffin, junior Madiline Theberge and the unit’s lone senior, Maya Slaughter, scored 758.2 points from the prone position, 631.8 standing and 710.5 kneeling for a total of 2,089.6.
That was 13.2 points better than second-place Kubasaki of Japan and 25.2 better than third-place Nile C. Kinnick of Japan. Yokota came closest to Perry among Division II schools, with 2,048.4 points.
To Cramer, both his championship teams of last year and this year were “great teams.”
“Each team was special, in that they complimented each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” Cramer said. “They set their goal and achieved it.”
The marksmanship event featured 11 DODEA-Pacific schools and was held at its long-standing home at Osan. It was held in person for the second straight year, after being held virtually for two years due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Kadena, Humphreys win in eSports
Sergio Mendoza and Eddie Rozzi have spent their years teaching in DODEA-Pacific as coaches of what the latter calls “more traditional sports,” Mendoza coaching football and Rozzi volleyball and basketball.
The two tried their hand coaching eSports teams, Mendoza with Kadena and Rozzi with Humphreys, in last week’s Far East championships and came away victorious in two electronic games.
Kadena took first place in Rocket League, a game of three-on-three soccer with cars. Humphreys took second and Guam High third.
In Valorant, a first-person shooter game in which teams must eliminate all opposing men or stop them from priming and detonating a bomb, Humphreys placed first, followed by Zama of Japan and Kadena.
“It’s kind of cool,” said Rozzi, a second-generation DODEA coach whose father, Dennis, coached for decades at the old Pusan American School.
For students who otherwise wouldn’t be playing traditional sports such as basketball or football, “it gives kids an outlet for competition,” Rozzi said.