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With their backs to the wall, Yokota volleyball somehow survived Wednesday and got to the finals of the Far East Division II tournament.

Zama led the Panthers by two sets and had three match points, leading 24-21 in the third set. But Yokota strung together five service points and won out from there, 23-25, 23-25, 26-24, 25-18, 15-10.

Yokota takes on a suddenly rejuvenated Christian Academy Japan team in Thursday’s final, which tips off at 4 p.m. at Yokota High School’s Capps Gym.

In back-to-back matches, the Knights ousted the teams that won the title the last two years. CAJ knocked off defending champion Sacred Heart in the second round, then 2014 champion Osan in the semifinals, 25-22, 25-11, 26-24.

While Yokota is making its first D-II finals appearance, Thursday’s Division I tournament final pits teams that are no strangers to each other in any sense.

Two-time defending champion Kubasaki and 2011-13 champion American School In Japan returned to the title match after conquering their semifinal foes. Tip time Thursday is 1 p.m.

The Dragons had little trouble erasing Seisen 25-14, 25-10, 25-10. But the Mustangs had their hands full with 11-time DODEA-Japan regular-season champion Nile C. Kinnick in a 25-12, 25-9, 23-25, 23-25, 15-9 victory.

Far East tennis also reaches its conclusion Thursday. No DODEA players remain in the main draws, but Seoul American remained in the hunt for top team honors among DODEA Division I teams.

The Falcons still have Joshua Gagnet and Colby Mortensen going for fifth place in the consolation singles brackets and Mortensen and partner Anisha Harilal chasing fifth in girls doubles.

A handful of DODEA teams including E.J. King and Yokota still have a shot at catching CAJ for Division II team title honors, with Cobras boys doubles pair Akira Goodman and Jonathan Lee and Panthers doubles pair Kaia Austin and Elly Garcia alive for placement.


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