Saturday, March 21, 2009

Day 1 - Game 2 - Kamimura Gakuen (Kagoshima) vs. Chūkyōdai Chūkyō (Aichi)

After that amazing game, one wonders if the next two will continue the trend.

And the next match-up could deliver. Kamimura Gakuen, a school founded just recently from Kagoshima (but strong), comes up against Chuukyoudai Chuukyou, a perennial power team from Aichi.

Kamimura Gakuen (Kagoshima)
LF Uechi
2B Yamanouchi
SS Eguchi
3B Oohata
C Nakamura
1B Tokunaga
RF Suzuki
P Koike
CF Yoshikawa

Chuukyoudai Chuukyou (Aichi)
SS Yamanaka
2B Kunitomo
3B Kawai
P Doubayashi
LF Isomura
C Shibata
1B Morimoto
RF Kaneyama
CF Iwatsuki

2:05 PM - First Pitch

Top 1st
Unlike the first game, Chuukyou's ace Doubayashi starts off well yielding only a 2-out single.

Bottom 1st
Kamimura Gakuen's ace Koike returns the favor retiring the side with some help from Chuukyou's aggressive batters.

(I have to go back to the MBS replays as the live feed from has become inconsistent flipping between channels. Expect to be at least 2 innings behind the live coverage from here on out.)

Top 2nd
Doubayashi is pitching really well. He's hitting his spots and making the batters look rather silly. He retires the side in order with 2 K's.

Bottom 2nd
Koike gives up his first baserunner as he walks Doubayashi to start the inning. Isomura bunts him along to 2nd yielding the first real scoring opportunity.

Shibata gets a hold of the first pitch and lines it! But it's right at Oohata for the 2nd out!

And Morimoto weakly grounds to 1st to end the inning. The pitchers are really on their game.

Top 3rd
Doubayashi continues his dominance on the mound, retiring the side in order again, but not before getting a scare as the #9 hitter Yoshikawa, drives one to deep left. It also looks like the wind is picking up blowing out to left, so perhaps we may yet see more HR's before the day is done. Just not in this game.

Bottom 3rd
With pitching dominating the scene the teams need to scramble and get their offenses going. Chuukyou finally gets their first hit as #9 batter Iwatsuki gets a one-out single through the right side. It's now back to the top of the order and Yamanaka.

And he takes the first pitch deep to left! Uechi runs back, but it's over his head! Iwatsuki heads for 3rd, and the relay is bobbled by 3B Oohata!! Iwatsuki easily comes in to score and Chuukyou takes the 1-0 lead! Meanwhile, Yamanaka goes to 3rd on the error!

It's Kunitomo's turn to bring the runner home, but it looks like they're not bunting. But wait! With the count 2-0 they do put down the squeeze!!! But Kunitomo pops it up!! Koike easily camps under it, and since Yamanaka was running all the way home, he's easily doubled off 3rd for the inning ending DP. A shame, but Chuukyou has scored the first run!

Top 4th
Kamimura Gakuen needs to answer as one run could easily win this game. Yamanouchi makes a bid for a hit with a grounder up the middle. Kunitomo makes a fine play in the gap, but his throw pulls Morimoto off the bag and Yamanouchi is safe! He's promptly moved over by Eguchi into scoring position.

And while Oohara moves him to 3rd on a grounder to 1st, Nakamura can't bring him in.

Bottom 4th
Chuukyou tries to continue on it's "rush". Kawai singles past Tokunaga to start the inning. Doubayashi looks to bunt him over, but he instead pulls the bat back and swings away!!! It's right at Koike though, and he goes to 2nd for one, but the relay is offline and Doubayashi reaches.

That doesn't deter them though as Isomura singles through the left side! Runners on 1st and 2nd with one down!

But Shibata and Morimoto both swing away early and fly to left, ending the threat. Koike is pitching well, but is definitely showing more cracks that Doubayashi.

Top 5th
Doubayashi yields his 2nd hit, a one-out bloop single to center by Suzuki. But Koike's attempt to bunt him over does the exact opposite as Doubayashi starts the 1-6-3 DP just barely getting Koike to end the inning. Halfway through the game, and it looks like Chuukyou's 1 run may just be enough.

Bottom 5th
Koike keeps Kamimura Gakuen in the game, retiring the side in order. But he needs the offense to get going otherwise it'll be for naught.

Top 6th
Kamimura gets their leadoff batter on as Yoshikawa gets plunked by Doubayashi. And he takes off for 2nd on the 1st pitch! But Shibata has none of it and throws him out! It looked close though, and he may have been safe. Nonetheless, he's out and Kamimura has no answer as the next two batters are retired.

Bottom 6th
Chuukyou gets yet another runner as Kawai lines one to right field. Then Nakamura lets a ball get by him and Kawai advances to 2nd! A second run for Chuukyou could be crushing.

Doubayashi stays patient and hits a line shot! But it's right at Yamanouchi and he easily doubles off Kawai to end the inning!

But Kamimura Gakuen only has 9 outs remaining...

Top 7th
Doubayashi continues to cruise along, with the batters continuing to hit the ball on the ground.

But Oohata grabs a hold of one!!! That's driven to right center! Iwatsuki goes back...


Out of nowhere, cleanup batter Oohata hits a hanging pitch and drives it out to tie the game!!!!! 1-1!!

Doubayashi gets the next two batters, but it's a new ball game!

Bottom 7th
Chuukyou looks to retake the lead. Isomura hits a blooper down the right field line, but Yamanouchi makes a fine catch. Then Koike gives up a walk to Shibata and a single back up the middle to Morimoto putting runners at 1st and 2nd with one down for Kaneyama.

Koike is starting to leave his pitches high, perhaps a sign of fatigue...

But he gets Kaneyama to pop up in foul territory and he's one out away from getting out of the inning.

Iwatsuki steps up, already having driven in their only run back in the 3rd.

And he gets a hold of the first pitch! That's going into center!!! Yoshikawa hurries back!!! He's running, and running, leaps and it's off his glove!!! Shibata and Morimoto come in to score and Chuukyoudai Chuukyou regains the lead, 3-1!!

Koike gets out the inning without further damage, but he finds himself behind once again.

Top 8th
Looking for any spark they can get, Yamamoto-kantoku sends out Shirazawa to pinch-hit to start the 8th. He hits a soft liner to left to start the inning, and he's heading for 2nd!! He reaches easily and Kamimura is in business!

Koike hits a grounder to 2nd advancing Shirazawa. This time around, it looks like they're not putting on the squeeze.

Or not... Yoshikawa shows bunt, but pulls it back! Are they going to try for it?

Nope. He's swinging away and fouls one off. And another.

But Doubayashi puts him away as he whiffs on a change! 2 down!

Uechi grounds out to 2nd to end the inning. It looks like it's over for them.

Bottom 8th
Koike looks to have settled down again, retiring the first 2 batters with ease. But then he inexplicably walks Doubayashi on 4 straight. And he's having trouble pitching a strike to Isomura.

But Koike hangs one which Isomura takes to left-center to put runners at the corners for Shibata!

Shibata then hits a scorcher past a diving Oohata!! Doubayashi comes in to score and it's 4-1!

Morimoto steps up, and he hits a comebacker to Koike! But it's off his glove! Oohata rushes in, but has no play! Isomura scores and it's a 5-1 game!

And Kaneyama also hits a comebacker!! That too is off of Koike's glove!! But it's right at Eguchi who's able to make the play at 1st to end the inning. But now the deficit seem insurmountable for Kamimura Gakuen with only 3 outs left.

Top 9th
And as expected, Kamimura Gakuen battles, but eventually goes quietly in the 9th as Chuukyoudai Chuukyou advances to the 2nd round.

Doubayashi looks good on the mound, and if the offense can get clicking, Chuukyou could be a force in the tournament.


Notable performances
Oohata (Kamimura Gakuen) - 1-4, HR
Doubayashi (Chuukyou) - CG, ER, 5 H, 5 K, BB
Isomura (Chuukyou) - 2-3, R
Morimoto (Chuukyou) - 2-4, R, RBI
Iwatsuki (Chuukyou) - 2-3, 2B, R, 2 RBI

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