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TOP > Game Report > Around the League: Wrapup of Week 1 Action

Game Report

Around the League: Wrapup of Week 1 Action


Bulls running back Keita Saruwatari dives into the end zone for a 1-yard touchdown in the first quarter against Tokyo Gas.

【East Division】

Fujitsu Frontiers 76, Meiji Yasuda Penta-Ocean Pirates 7: Colby Cameron threw five touchdown passes in little over a quarter and Gino Gordon rushed for two TDs, including a 69-yarder, as Fujitsu began defense of its first-ever league crown by pummeling Meiji Yasuda at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki. Cameron completed 15 of 18 passes for 263 yards as the Frontiers piled up 634 yards of offense. New linebacker Nixon Trasaun had one of Fujitsu’s three interceptions as the defense limited the Pirates to 73 total yards, with zero coming on the ground. Clark Teruaki Nakamura caught four passes for 136 yards, including three touchdowns—all in the first quarter—and rookie tight end Yuji Mizuno and Koji Yoneyama had two TD receptions each. The Pirates, under new head coach David Powroznik,  avoided a shutout when quarterback Shintaro Tanoue scored on an 8-yard run in the second quarter.


Obic Seagulls 59, Metropolitan Police Dept. Eagles 3: Takumon Hara caught touchdown passes from three different quarterbacks and ran for another score as Obic scored on all nine possessions (8 TDs and a field goal) in blitzing newly promoted MPD at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki. Starting QB Shun Sugawara completed 13 of 13 passes for 152 yards and a TD, and scored on a 1-yard plunge himself, while Asaki Mochizuki rushed for two touchdowns and Takushiro Hata threw for two. The Eagles, playing in X1 for the second time, got a 37-yard field goal in the fourth quarter from Ryuichi Harashima, which was set up by Takashi Sakota’s 37-yard run. Veteran Obic running back Takuya Furutani had 72 all-purpose yards, putting him over 10,000 yards for his career.


Nojima Sagahimara Rise 28, All Mitsubishi Lions 7: Eisuke Tomatsu scored on a 26-yard run late in the third quarter to break a 7-7 tie as Nojima pulled away with three second-half touchdowns and avoided an upset by All Mitsubishi on a wet day at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki. New American quarterback Benjamin Anderson, out of Arkansas-Pine Bluff, rushed for a game-high 97 yards on 10 carries, including a 13-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, while completing 6 of 11 passes for 78 yards with two interceptions. The teams traded touchdowns in the second quarter, with the Lions’ Shoma Taniguchi connecting with Shunsuke Sofue on a 2-yard score and the Rise’s other QB, Yuichiro Araki, throwing a 4-yard TD pass to Takahide Dejima. Shohei Hosono completed the scoring for the Rise with a 2-yard run with 42 seconds left in the game.


【Central Division】

Bulls Football Club 27, Tokyo Gas Creators 17: Defensive lineman Yohei Yamada rambled 48 yards for a touchdown with one of the Bulls’ three interceptions, helping the team pull off the biggest surprise of the opening week with a victory over Tokyo Gas at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki.  Keita Saruwatari, Keita Fujiwara and Shunsuke Kikuchi all scored on short runs for the Bulls, who were coming off a 1-4 season in 2014 that included a record-setting 100-0 loss to Obic. The Bulls trailed 10-6 when Fujiwara scored from the 3 with 17 seconds left in the first half. Tokyo Gas, which had its third straight 2-3 season in 2014, outgained the Bulls 349 to 201 but was hurt by the three turnovers, as well as a failed 4th-down gamble on the Bulls 9 in the first quarter.


Asahi Beer Silver Star 31, Lixil Deers 24: The new American tandam of Mason Mills and Roman Wilson combined for two passing touchdowns and  Yuto Omori returned an interception 55 yards for the winning score as rejuvenated Asahi Beer established itself as a force to be reckoned with this season with a victory over defending Central champion Lixil at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki.  Mills, out of San Diego, completed 41 of 48 passes for 391 yards and three touchdowns, with three interceptions. Wilson, a Princeton grad who played last season with X2′s Sidewinders, caught 10 passes for 152 yards, with the first of his two TD receptions a 51-yarder with his first catch of the game. Omori had two of the Asahi Beer’s three interceptions off Lixil QB Shohei Kato, who completed 21 of 38 passes for 209 yards and two touchdowns.


IBM BigBlue 117, Hurricanes 0: Tomokazu Sueyoshi rushed for five touchdowns and the IBM defense scored four touchdowns off turnovers in the fourth quarter as the BigBlue racked up the most points in a game in X-League history. Backup quarterback Satoshi Tagawa, getting plenty of playing time, completed 10 of 13 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns as IBM piled up 636 yards of offense.  New defensive end Demetrius Eaton, out of Northwestern, forced one of four fumbles (six turnovers overall), and the defense recorded a safety and only allowed the Hurricanes to cross midfield once. Star QB Kevin Craft played just the first quarter, completing 3 of 3 passes for 88 yards and one touchdown. The previous record for most lopsided score was set last season when the Obic Seagulls routed the Bulls 100-0.


【West Division】

Elecom Kobe Finies 20, As One Black Eagles 0: Inoke Funaki ran 36 yards for a touchdown and Keijiro Kasuya threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to Kenji Tsunekane as Elecom began defense of its first-ever West Division title with a comprehensive victory over As One at Kobe’s Oji Stadium. Rookie kicker Hidetaka Nakano kicked a pair of field goals, one of which was set up by linebacker Mutsumi Takahashi’s interception, and Masahiro Tonai caught six passes for 74 yards. The Black Eagles offense was limited to 107 total yards, with Tyler Osborne and Takahashi each recording a sack.


Panasonic Impulse 90, Fuji Xerox J-Stars 0: Benjamin Dupree ran wild in his limited Japan debut, rushing for two touchdowns and returning consecutive punts for scores as Panasonic routed Fuji Xerox at Kobe’s Oji Stadium. Katsuya Tonka returned the opening kickoff 97 yards for the first of 13 touchdowns in the thrashing of the J-Stars, who are back in X1 for just the second time following a one-season stint in 2011. Fuji Xerox’s Roi Ashida had a 78-yard kickoff return to the Impulse 17, but the opportunity ended with a missed field goald. Dupree, out of The Citadel, is one of four new American players on the Impulse. They are the team’s first-ever with U.S. college experience.


Asahi Soft Drinks Challengers 44, Nagoya Cyclones 0:  Yusuke Kano threw two touchdown passes in the third quarter to break open a close game and propel Asahi Soft Drinks to a rout at Osaka’s Expo Flash Field in the debut of new head coach Naohito Matsumoto. The Challengers, who got their first points on a safety, led just 13-0 at halftime. The Challengers defense had three interceptions and held Nagoya to 81 total yards, including minus-9 rushing. Yuki Shirakami had an 85-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter and Shinji Kageyama kicked two field goals.