Team USA wins Tomodachi Bowl
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Team USA crushes Team Kanto 57 - 21, when the teams went head-to-head on the gridiron March 10, during the 2013 Tomodachi Bowl.
Team USA, comprised of players from Yokota, Zama American, Nile C. Kinnick, American School in Japan, Kubasaki, Kadena and Seoul American high schools took on Team Kanto, compiled of players from Waseda University high school and Hosei University high school.
Tomodachi Bowl, previously known as the Camellia Bowl, was renamed following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011. The game is a tribute to the true team effort that took place between the United States and Japan.
"As we gather for today's event, it's important that we remember the thousands of people who lost their lives that day," said Col. Mark August, 374th Airlift Wing commander, in his opening remarks. "Yet it's also important that we remember the friendship that was strengthened between our two nations during the following months. Thank you for keeping that remembrance alive--and for helping to nurture it further through this event."
The football game also brought unlikely teammates together in the name of friendship.
"(Tomodachi Bowl) is primarily an opportunity to interact with our host nation allies in the spirit of competition," said Timothy Pujol, Yokota High School football coach. "Secondly, these players normally compete against each other on Friday nights, but in this case they get the opportunity to be a part of the same team."
Though Team USA won the game, the reminder of the reason for the game was reminiscent throughout.
"I am confident that this event will continue to be an important annual reminder of the victims of the great Tohoku earthquake and the combined effort of Japanese and American relief workers to bring aid and comfort to those victims," Pujol said.
The 2014 Tomodachi Bowl will be hosted at Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Japan.