Seniors power Yokota past Edgren in opener
MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan – Look to the seniors. That was the plan for coach Tim Pujol and the Yokota Panthers in their season opener Friday at Robert D. Edgren, and it paid off in a resounding victory.
Marcus Henagan accounted for five touchdowns and Jamarvin Harvey rushed for three more and the Panthers routed the Eagles 56-24 to go over the .500 mark for the first time since their 2013 season opener, also a victory over Edgren.
“They showed great leadership in getting us off to a great start,” Pujol said. “They carried most of the load.”
Henagan returned the opening kickoff 70 yards for a touchdown, added scoring runs of 5, 29 and 68 yards and also threw a 38-yard TD pass to T.J. Reney.
Henagan accounted for 337 all-purpose yards, 166 rushing yards on 10 attempts, 2-for-2 passing for 46 yards and two returns for 125 yards.
Harvey scored on runs of 1, 3 and 5 yards and totaled 140 rushing yards on 11 carries. He also recorded 11 tackles. The Panthers had 342 yards on 28 rushing tries. Marquis Smith-Brown had an interception and Cole Grimes went 7-for-7 on extra-point kicks.
Those performances offset Shawn Robinson’s two rushing touchdowns for the Eagles. Robinson had 47 yards on 14 carries, while Vincent Doria had three catches for 82 yards, including a 19-yard scoring grab from Robinson.
“That quarterback is elusive,” Pujol said of Robinson. “He uses his feet to extend plays and gets the ball down the field. He’s a good football player. We have some work to do defensively, but overall for our first game, I was pleased.”
The Eagles, coach Jeremy Sanders said, need work on their middle defense and “must go back to the drawing board” regarding tackling. “We need to tackle better and develop a killer instinct,” Sanders said.
Edgren next travels to Zama, while Yokota hosts Matthew C. Perry in Friday games with kickoffs scheduled for 7 p.m.