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High School Girls Basketball Tournament
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On January 11th, the HS Girls' Basketball team headed to Yokohama International School for the WJAA JV Girls and Boys 2024 Basketball Tournament. We returned home victorious with a trophy in hand.


High School Girls Basketball Tournament

Words by Nanako Dobashi; Photos by the '23-'24 HIS Publications Team

After a couple of years of rebuilding, the HS Girls' Basketball Team made a trip over to Yokohama International School alongside the HS Boys’ Basketball Team on January 11th for the WJAA JV Girls and Boys 2024 Basketball Tournament. It was the first basketball tournament for many of us, and we were excited but super nervous at the same time.

Back row from left: Mr. Rankin, Rebecca, Madi, Juri, Nanako, Marlene, Coach Motomochi 

Front row from left: Michelle, Joohye, Jiyou, Hanae

Day 1

Our first game was against the host school, Yokohama International School (YIS). It was a very close game and we fought fiercely but lost 33-36. As our team was very newly created, we did not have many opportunities to compete against other teams in a proper game, so the first match felt very challenging. 

The second game was against Fukuoka International School. We focused on improving our mistakes from the first game, communicating with each other more, and hustling for the ball more. We were all calmer and concentrated on the game compared to the first, which led us to our first win of 53-10.

Day 2

Our first game on the second day was against Senri Osaka International School (SOIS). It was challenging as we were exhausted from the first day, and their team was so much more organized than ours. Breaking through their defense and keeping up with their speed was a struggle, but with Marlene’s height and strength and with Joohye’s incredible decision-making skills we fought hard until the last second, winning a close 23-21. Our team spirit was stronger than ever, and all of us believed in going to the championships. 

The second match was against The British School in Tokyo. BST had beaten both SOIS and Saint Maur International School by far on the first day, and since our game against SOIS was close, it made us nervous. Personally, this was my favorite game. It made us realize how far we had come, and it felt like our team was coming together. Winning 28-13, the Huskies were through to the finals! 

The few hours until our championship game was filled with excitement and nervousness. Some of us went to support the HIS boys' team, some went to rest and eat some food. When the time finally came, we were determined to win, and our spirit was stronger than ever. Our opponent was YIS, whom we lost to on Day 1, which meant that we knew mostly what we needed to do to win the match. The game was very tough but exciting, and every single member of the team fought hard until the end. The boys' team came to cheer for us too, roaring and shouting from the sidelines every time our team made a good play. Unfortunately, our energy did not last till the end, and the exhaustion pushed us to play more aggressively. This caused a lot of foul plays on our side making it easier for YIS to score. The match ended with a really close 34-38. Even though we lost once more, we were satisfied with how we played as we gave the last game our all, and we were able to go home with a trophy!!!

This tournament was an amazing experience for me. Meeting and bonding with new people were very nice, and the atmosphere of the tournament was awesome, especially because there were both boys' and girls' teams at the same place this time. Support from the boys’ team and parents who came to cheer on us helped us through tough games. Our team was dead-set on winning, and I think that we were able to get closer because of the team spirit. Returning home to HIS with a trophy in hand felt amazing too, as HIS is the place that first introduced me to basketball and got me addicted to it. I am very grateful for this experience. 

A special thank you to Coach Motomochi, for coaching all of us with so much patience and kindness. Thank you so much to Mrs. Gotoda and Mrs. Ide for chaperoning us and going above and beyond to support both the girls' and boys’ teams. Thank you to Mr. Rankin, for supporting us from Day 1 and getting us to this tournament. And finally, Marlene, for being the best rebounder we could ever ask for. I hope this memory stays with you for the rest of your life! We miss you so much. I hope you can continue playing basketball in Germany too!

We hope our success this season will encourage new athletes to join us next year, where we hope to level up and bring a trophy home next year too. Thank you so much for all the support! For more information on Huskies Athletics, follow our sports account on Instagram @his.huskies.athletics. GO HUSKIES!

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