Shipyard stays alive in summer soccer playoffs

Scott Kawamura kicks the ball over the head of the goalkeeper for a goal.

Story and photo by Randy Dela Cruz

Sports Editor, Ho‘okele

Scott Kawamura, a Department of Defense civilian, scored back-to-back goals late in the second half to help Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard (PHNSY) defeat Da Chutes, 4-2, on Sept. 8 in a Summer Soccer League postseason matchup at Earhart Field, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

Up by a score of 2-1 in the second half, Kawamura scored on a one-on-one against the keeper to put PHNSY up by two goals, before he added the final dagger with a kick over the head of the goalkeeper to seal up the game at 4-1.

The win kept PHNSY alive in the playoffs and now the team only needs a victory in the semi-finals Sept. 15 and in the following championship game Sept. 16 to walk away with the title.

Shipyard will play Navy Information Operations Command (NIOC) Hawaii in a semifinal showdown at Earhart Field on Sept. 15 starting at 9 a.m. If PHNSY wins, it will advance to the championship game at noon on Sept. 16.

“Our defense played well and we held them (Da Chutes) down,” Kawamura said after the win. “On offense, we rotated and ran off of each other. We got some openings and took advantage of it, but it was a team effort.”

At first, the showdown between the two teams looked like a possible shootout, as PHNSY and Da Chutes traded goals early to start off with the game tied at 1-1. Shipyard got out in front first after Navy Diver 1st Class Wesley Lantz put a shot away to take a 1-0 advantage.

The lead didn’t last long, as Da Chutes mounted a quick comeback and tied the score on a straightaway kick by Master Sgt. Edwin Bernal.

The fast pace continued and in just a few minutes after the goal by Bernal, PHNSY retook the lead on a shot by Joe Grogan, who is also a DoD civilian.

Grogan is a veteran soccer player and was a key member of several Joint Base championship teams, when he played for the Pearl Harbor Futbol Club.

Grogan used his experience to advance the ball through a lane down the left side of the field.

After breaking out ahead of the pack, Grogan finished off the play by placing a perfect boot into the goal for a 2-1 lead that stood through halftime.

Following intermission, both teams tightened up their defense and didn’t allow a goal for most of the second half.

Just when it appeared that the game was headed for a 2-1 final, Kawamura broke the drought and scored with a clean shot from the right side of the goal.

In order to free himself for the shot on goal, Kawamura executed a sharp cut past his defender, before scoring on a one-on-one matchup against the goalkeeper.

“I ran down and cut it, (but) because of the cut, I was allowed a lot of time to shoot,”

Kawamura stated. “The goalie was just waiting for his defense to come back and help him. He (goalie) did the right thing. If he comes out to meet me, he gets beat. I got lucky. I had a nice shot and I made it.”

The second goal from Kawamura was even more spectacular, as he got a pass from teammate Liko Oliveira, a DoD civilian, and made a tough shot over the head of the goalie for a 4-1 lead.

“Liko had a good ball,” he said. “It’s all of your teammates that make you better.”

Finally, with time running out, Da Chutes managed to put one more score on the scoreboard, when Master Sgt. Justin Saint-Jacques finished off a kick with a goal that put the final score at 4-2.

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Category: Sports