The final game of the day features two neighboring prefectures. And surprisingly, both Karyou and Risshoudai Shounan just blew through their brackets with little opposition.
There is a difference of styles on the mound though. Shounan's Sakida can throw upper 80 with a slider and curve versus Karyou's Adachi who throws in the low-mid 80's with several offspeed pitches.
As I said before, I don't particularly like the matchup only because a rural team has to go home. I like the underdog at times, and it's nice to see them succeed.
LF Harada (#16)
Risshoudai Shounan (Shimane)
4:20 PM - First pitch!
Sakida starts off nicely getting Tamai to fly out to left, and Yamazaki and Suetomi to ground out to the left side to end the inning.
Hayashida leads off for Risshoudai with a chopper up the middle for a single! Ono bunts him over to give the newcomer a chance at an early lead.
Yamazaki flies out to left and there's 2 down.
And Sakida hits a long foul down the right side. Suetomi goes the fence and makes the catch! End of 1!
Sakida looks shaky to start the 2nd. After throwing a pitch into the left batter's box, he throws it in the right one and hits Kaimori.
Then on the next pitch to Nishoka, he throws behind his head but manages to hit the bat for a foul ball!
Don't know if that shook him up as he grounds to Takagi who starts the nice 4-6-3 double play!
And that's too bad for Karyou as Yamamoto singles through the right side!
Sakida though squashes any thoughts of that as he gets Harada to ground to short.
Hopefully it's not retaliation, but Narita gets hit to lead off the 2nd.
But then Morikawa catches Narita napping and picks him off! It's a bit funny to see him try and tiptoe around it and stick out his foot to first repeatedly, but he's still out.
And Iijima strikes out looking to end the inning.
Bottom of the order Morikawa and Adachi have little success against Sakida. Tamai singles through the right side, but then gets caught trying to steal 2nd on the very next pitch!
1st year Takagi looks to jumpstart Risshoudai's offense as he singles back up the middle. Doumoto moves him for for top batter Hayashida.
And he gets hit by Adachi! That's the 3rd hit batsmen between both teams!
Ono takes the first pitch to 3rd where they try to turn two, but only manage to get the runner at 2nd. 2 down, runners at the corners for Yamawaki.
He flies out to center though and that ends the inning.
Yamazaki with a drive to left center! Ono running into the gap, dives, but can't get it! That's to the wall and Yamazaki's in with a double.
Suetomi looks to bunt him over, but he can't lay it down and fouls out.
Kaimori comes up and is swinging away, but he strikes out.
And Nishoka flies out to right to end the inning. Karyou can't get a leadoff double home!
Sakida gets hit to start the 4th, and that's Adachi's 3rd hit batter today!
Narita looks to bunt him over, but he pops it up! Morikawa gets under it for out number 1!
Gotou up and Sakida takes matters into his own hands and steals 2nd himself! But he's stranded as Gotou srikes out and Iijima grounds out to short...
Yamamoto making a bid for a hit with a falling liner to right! Doumoto charges in, dives and makes the sliding catch! Nice play!
After a groundout by Harada, Morikawa singles through the left side. 2 out, one on for Adachi.
But Sakida strikes him out to end the inning!
Adachi cruised through the last of Risshoudai's lineup, but then issues a walk to top batter Hayashida aftger a 9 pitch at-bat.
Then with Ono up, Hayashida breaks for 2nd! Throw by Morikawa isn't in time!
And with the count 1-2, Hayashida breaks for 3rd! But Ono strikes out to end the inning! We head to the break in good time, with both teams unable to bring anyone home.
Karyou comes out of the break, but is unable to start anything against Sakida. 2 grounders and a lazy fly to left is all they can muster.
After a fly to shallow center that Yamazaki runs down, Sakida hits a short fly to left! Yamamoto and Harada converge, but neither can come up with the ball! Sakida was running the whole way and slides safely into 2nd!
Narita grounds out to Tamai at 3rd, leaving Sakida unable to advance!
With Gotou up, Sakida breaks for 3rd!! Morikawa with the throw, but it's not in time! The go-ahead run is 90 feet away!
Gotou with a liner to center! But Yamazaki runs it down and the inning is over!
Both teams continues to get baserunners late in an inning. Yamamoto gets on with 2 down as he singles to right, but then gets caught stealing 2nd.
Adachi gives Rishhoudai's batters the no-go. He retires the bottom of the order in quick fashion and we remain in a scoreless draw!
Karyou goes down in order, but Morikawa may have had a base hit had he not fallen over after making contact...
Defensive change for Karyou. #18 Itou comes in for Harada in left.
Adachi gets Hayashida to ground to 2nd, and Ono to fly out to center. Just when it seems like he's about to have a clean inning, he hits Yamawaki! That's the 4th hit batter this game, and it's now more than the number of actual hits they have (3)!
Sakida hits a tricky shallow popup to center, but Yamamoto secures it for the 3rd out.
We head to the 9th inning still at 0-0!
Sakida falls behind Tamai 3-1, and then hits him! Leadoff runner on for Karyou here in the 9th!
Yamazaki successfully lays down the bunt and now they have a runner in scoring position! It's the first real scoring chance for Karyou!
Oota-kantoku calls a conference on the mound.
So, what will Suetomi do?
He hits a drive down the left field line! Gotou racing to the line, dives and makes a great catch!!!! That was definitley a games saver right there by Gotou!!!!
And Kaimori grounds out to 1st! Karyou's only solid opportunity is robbed by Gotou! To the bottom of the 9th!!
Adachi strikes out Narita for the first out.
Next up is Gotou. Can he turn a great defensive play into....
OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
GOTOU CRUSHES A BALL TO DEEP LEFT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
HAITAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SAYONARA HOMERUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Gotou does it! He hits a sayonara homerun off of Adachi to end the game! A storybook ending to the game for Gotou and Risshoudai Shounan!!!!
And on the opposite side, the pain for Karyou's players as a great game ends in a devastating manner! From the ace Adachi, whose tears roll down as Risshoudai Shounan's song plays, to the other players who can't help but cry while picking up the dirt off the Koshien infield.
In time hopefully the painful memories of the loss will go away, and what will remain will the good times they spent of the hallowed grounds of Koshien...
Yamamoto (Karyou) - 2-3
Yamazaki (Karyou) - 1-3, 2B
Adachi (Karyou) - L, 8.1 IP, ER, 4 H, 7 K, BB, 4 HBP
Gotou (Risshoudai Shounan) - 1-4, サヨナラ HR, R, RBI
Sakida (Risshoudai Shounan) - W, 9 IP, 0 ER, 5 H, 6 K, 0 BB, 2 HBP