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TOP > What’s New > Rise run rampant in 2nd half to crush Black Eagles

What’s New

Rise run rampant in 2nd half to crush Black Eagles


KOBE (Nov. 10) —  Once the Nojima Sagamihara Rise deviated from their game plan and went from a passing attack to a running one, it was off to the races.


Eisuke Tomatsu ran for 127 of his 128 yards and all of his three touchdowns in the second half, when Nojima exploded for five scores to rout the As One Black Eagles 42-7 in their second-stage clash at Kobe’s Oji Stadium.


Masato Kinoshita threw two touchdown passes, including a 66-yarder to Yoshinobu Imoto that accounted for the only points of the first half, as Nojima became the lone second-place team to win its opening game Sunday, putting the Rise (5-1) in good position to earn a spot in the final stage for the third year in a row.


“Our game plan focused on the passing attack, but even if our wide receivers were open, the quarterbacks were a bit too concerned with the pressure and couldn’t get the ball off,” Nojima head coach Tomoyuki Sunaga said. “In the second half, we went more with the run and that got us points, but it wasn’t the type of game we had aimed for.”


The Nojima defense forced no turnovers, but prevented As One from tying the game early in the third quarter with a goal-line stand at the 3-yard line. As One, which hurt itself with two missed field goals, was held to 198 total yards and a lone rushing touchdown by Koji Kato in the fourth quarter.


“If we could have scored when we got down to the 3, it might have changed the momentum,” As One head coach Takao Yoshimasa said. “But that’s our level right now. We can’t put it away when we need to.”


Nojima finishes up its second-stage campaign on Nov. 17 against the undefeated East Division champion Fujitsu Frontiers, who last week walloped As One 55-0. Nojima and Fujitsu met in the 2011 semifinals, with the Frontiers winning 38-3.


Nojima, the Central Division runner-up, got off to a good start when, on its second possession, Kinoshita hooked up on the long touchdown pass with Imoto, who finished with three receptions for 92 yards.


But that would be all the points Nojima would take into halftime, as the Black Eagles’ defense stepped up and help produce the best scoring chance of the second quarter. Teruyuki Nakamura’s interception of a Takahiro Kojima pass gave As One the ball on the Nojima 40. The Black Eagles drove to the 20,  but Takayuki Nakanishi missed a 37-yard field goal attempt.


In the third quarter, Nojima drove to the As One 19, but Kinoshita couldn’t handle a snap and defensive back Ken Yahagi picked up the loose ball and scampered 74 yards before he was brought down at the Nojima 3.


On first down, Ryo Sakamoto was stopped for no gain and Makoto Okuno threw an incomplete pass. After Okuno was dropped for a four-yard loss, Nakanishi lined up a 24-yard field goal, only to miss again to waste another opportunity.


At this point, Sunaga opted to focus on the running attack and it paid off when Tomatsu scored on a 35-yard run, although the score was set up by a 35-yard pass from Kojima to Keiichi Ishikawa, who finished with three catches for 63 yards.


A 31-yard run on an option by Kinoshita set the stage for Tomatsu’s second touchdown, a 14-yarder that made it 21-0 with 3:45 left in the third quarter.


Nojima doubled its tally in the fourth quarter, starting with Kinoshita’s 23-yard touchdown pass to rookie Ryota Shimodan. After Kato put As One on the scoreboard with a 1-yard run, Tomatsu completed his hat-trick with a 1-yard touchdown and Yohei Hosono wrapped things up with a 2-yard score.


Kinoshita completed 9 of 12 passes for 170 yards as the Rise amassed 465 total yards.







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