News: Gaijins beat Dragons in Intramural soccer game
Story by Lance Cpl. James Smith
IWAKUNI, Japan - The Intramural Soccer season continued into its second week when Combat Logistics Company 36, Dragons, faced off against Matthew C. Perry High School Gaijins, August 5, 2013.
The season began July 29 with both of these opposing teams playing two-to-three games so far. It was the first match-up between these two teams in competition.
"We play with them a lot and they're really encouraging," said Sam Hess, M. C. Perry High School senior and Gaijins player. "They're always out here giving us pointers. It's nice, but they're still really good competition. It's always high intensity when we play against Marines."
The Gaijins team consists of nine players, all of which are current students or recent alumni.
"We are always the underdogs because we're younger," said Hess. "These guys are pretty good, but we've been winning our games, so we are looking pretty good right now."
Once the game started, the Dragons rushed their opponents to intimidate them, but the Gaijins didn’t back down.
The two teams clashed back and forth with the Dragons scoring first.
Moments later, the Dragons received another opportunity as Josh Hess, Gaijins goal keeper, lost his footing trying to stop the ball, leaving an empty net for their second goal.
Frustrated, the Gaijins took time to pull each other together and gain some much needed confidence and determination, which eventually led them to scoring before the end of the first half.
"Every time you're in the lead, you have that mindset of being in the clear and how it's smooth sailing ahead," said Raheem Johnson, Dragons player and coach.
The Dragons laid-back mindset would come back to hurt them as the Gajins scored two goals in the first five minutes of the second half taking the lead for the first time in the game.
"What happened was that the other team started passing the ball a lot more and they caught us off guard," said Johnson. "They're quick, but small. Also, they've been working together for a while."
From there, the scoring continued for the Gaijins while the Dragons frustration began deteriorating their teamwork and cohesion. When the final whistle blew, the Gaijins would stand tall, winning the game with an impressive score 6-2.
"Ultimately, the team knows we need to play a little bit more because we haven't practiced that much together," said Johnson. "We just need to practice more to get better."
The Gaijins are currently undefeated with three wins while the Dragons have one win and three losses, but the season has just begun. With 11 teams total and the season only two weeks in, anything can happen.