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Don’t believe for a second that the Yokosuka Seahawks feel comfortable atop the U.S. Forces Japan-American Football League standings at the season’s halfway mark.

Coach Robert Cole and the Seahawks firmly feel there’s still a long road ahead to retaining their 2006 championship and winning the league title for the seventh time since 2000.

“We’re just getting started,” Cole said after Yokosuka defeated second-place Yokota 28-8 on Saturday at Ikego Heights Naval Housing Facility. Yokosuka improved to 3-0 while dropping the Warriors to 2-1 in a battle of the league’s two unbeaten teams.

“We aren’t done until we bring the championship home.“

At the bottom of the standings, Misawa (1-2) got its first victory, a 30-0 defeat of Atsugi (0-3) at Atsugi Naval Air Facility’s Reid Memorial Stadium.

Yokosuka 28, Yokota 8: Craig Spotser caught an 18-yard touchdown pass from Mike Ott and Damien Williams rambled 11 yards for a score to put Yokosuka up 14-0 after one quarter, before Yokota snapped a 17-quarter Seahawks shutout streak by scoring a second-quarter TD. Yokosuka hadn’t allowed a point since losing 12-7 at Yokota last Aug. 6.

It remained 14-8 until the fourth, when Dayon Banks and Frederick Farmer sealed the victory with scoring runs of 6 and 32 yards.

The Seahawks’ defense held firm after allowing the second-quarter score, getting four sacks from linebacker Stephen Fox.

Cole credited the Seahawks’ balance for the victory.

“We have a bunch of guys who love to play football with a huge heart, and that’s all you can ask for,” Cole said.

Misawa 30, Atsugi 0: Quarterback Fred Ellis returned from a leg injury in grand style, tossing touchdown passes of 50 yards to Darvin Johnson and 15 and 10 yards to tight end Patrick Pendleton.

Tayshawn Brown, filling in for 2005 league MVP Jamey Crawford at tailback, rushed for over 200 yards, including touchdown runs of 35 and 8 yards.

“I don’t know if we would have won this game without him,” Jets coach Dwight Abel said of Brown.

He was one of 10 players who returned last month from deployment in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom, and it made a “huge difference,” Abel said. In addition to Brown, Abel and the Jets regained three receivers, two linebackers and a safety.

Cornelius Walker intercepted two passes and recovered a fumble and Johnson recorded an interception. Andre Gaskin recovered a fumble for the Jets.


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