Last season, it took 21 games before Bryan Bagunas and Oita Miyoshi nabbed their first win.
This time around, it only took one.
The Weisse Adler opened their 2021-22 Japan V.League Division 1 men’s tournament campaign with a 25-19, 25-20, 21-25, 28-26 victory against home team Sakai, Saturday at the Nippon Steel Sakai Gymnasium.
Bagunas led Oita Miyoshi with 22 points scattered through 17 attacks, four blocks, and a service ace. The 6-foot-5 import was also efficient in his hitting, going 17-of-29, good for 58.6 percent.
With the Blazers threatening to force a deciding set, 26-25, Oita Miyoshi came through with three straight points to bag its first win.
Weisse Adler new import Emerson Rodriguez debuted with 19 points, while Kota Yamada led the locals with 16 points, including four aces.
Canadian Sharone Vernon-Evans paced the Blazers with 20 points built on 16 hits, three block kills, and a service ace.
Yuki Higuchi was a spark off the bench, playing just two sets but making 12 points.
The two squads clash again tomorrow, 12:00 PM, at the same Sakai venue.