Day 1 coverage ends with two perhaps unknown teams.
On the first base side is Hachinohe Koudai Dai-ichi. They've been in the shadows of Aomori Yamada, but they've been a solid squad in recent years. Now, they didn't have to face Aomori Yamada, but they did defeate Kousei Gakuin 3-0 in the final.
They are led by ace Nakayama Yuuya. While there are not complete numbers on him, we do know that overall he gave up 2 runs and 11 hits in 32 innings of work while striking out 33 and walking 9.
With a 3/4 delivery he has a low 140's fastball and also throws a curve, slider and forkball. He's quick on the mound, which may affect the batter's tempo.
For Eimei, it was a relatively easy road to the Kagawa title, although they did defeat Kagawa Nishi in the quarterfinals.
The good news is that they had a ton of offense, outscoring their opponents 54-20 in their 5 games. The bad news is that the opponents here are of better quality than in the tournament.
Another possible knock on Eimei is their ace Hirai Kazuki. His peripherals aren't bad, striking out about 8 batters and walking 2 per 9. But, apparently the radar gun has him at a max of 136 which means there is little room for error for him.
LF Nishioka Isao
2B Kitamura Takuma
P Hirai Kazuki
RF Nakauchi Daito
1B Morisaki Masahiro
3B Tanaka Rei
SS Tano Yasushi
CF Sakaguchi Masato
C Anan Daisuke
Hachinohe Koudai Dai-ichi (Aomori)
CF Shimohata Daiki
SS Fujita (Hiroshi)
RF Sasaki Shuuhei
1B Tanaka Hiroki
LF Miyazaki (Ryuuki)
2B Nakamura (Kouta)
3B Toyokawa (Yuuki)
C Ogasawara Takuya
P Nakayama Yuuya
3:17 PM - First Pitch!
Nishioka starts it off for Eimei with a single to right. After a sac bunt, Nakayama walks the next batter on 4 straight! Early trouble for Hachinohe!
And Nakauchi drives one to right! But the wind knocks it down! Shuuhei camps under it for the out, but Nishioka advances to 3rd.
But Morisaki pops it up! Tanaka goes over to the dugout, reaches out, and makes the nice catch to end the inning!
Hirai handles the top of Hachinohe's order with little trouble, racking up 2 K's in a 1-2-3 inning. They look a little lost at the plate to start.
Nakayama is a quick worker, with a 3/4 delivery and as quick as I can try to catch up, he records 3 straight outs.
Eimei's Morisaki seems to be hitting that mid 130 with an overhand delivery. And yet, he records two more K's in Tanaka and Miyazaki.
Nakamura finally gets Hachinohe their first hit with a single through the right side.
And boldly steals a base against the lefty!
But Toyokawa swings in the dirt for strike 3 and that's the inning for Hachinohe. Hirai isn't overpowering, but has already struck out 5 in the first 2 innings.
#9 batter Anan takes a ball to the opposite field for a leadoff single!
Wild pitch from Nakayama! Anan advances to 2nd giving Eimei a great scoring opportunity!
Nishioka with a hard grounder to 3rd. Toyokawa can't handle it and it goes into left! Runners at the corners now with nobody out!
Key sanshin from Nakayama! He gets Kitamura for the 1st out of the inning. Now a double play can get Hachinohe out of the mess.
Except he walks Hirai on 4 straight! Manrui for cleanup batter Nakauchi!
But swings at a pitch way up in the zone for the 2nd out!
Nakayama strikes out Morisaki on a ball in the dirt to end the inning! Are you kidding me? How the heck did he get out of that mess, all while getting all 3 outs via the K??!
Looks like Anan was injured a bit when he dived back to 1st as C Ogasawara rolled over his legs while diving. He comes back out, and we're playing ball again.
Ogasawara takes the first pitch and sends it over Nishioka's head for a leadoff double!
Nakayama bunts him over for the top of the order.
Shimohata with a scorcher to 2nd! Kitamura blocks it!!!! Goes to 1st and Ogasawara has to stay!!
Hirai strikes out Fujita for the 2nd time today! Eimei is out of the jam!
Nakayama settles down here in the 4th. 3 up, 3 down. Time to get back on the stick!
Morisaki with a nice pick on Shuuhei's grounder for the first out. After a popup, Miyazaki loops one into center. A groundout to 2nd ends the inning, and now it looks like the teams are quickly moving through the innings.
Anan tries a bunt single, but Nakayama fields it cleanly.
Nishioka drives one to the left center field wall for a double!
Oh, right, about Nakayama. He has a 3/4 delivery and throws in the mid to upper 130's.
Kitamura flies out to shallow center, and their chance is about to go by the wayside...
And Hirai is given the green light at 2-0 but flies out to left to end the inning...
Ogasawara surprises Eimei with a safety bunt and books it down the 1st base line for a 1-out single.
Ogasawara tests Anan's arm by stealing 2nd, and he bounces it there allowing Ogasawara to reach!
Sanshin! Nakayama strikes out! But Anan's throw to 1st is short! Morisaki has to go low to get it, and goes off the bag. Dives back to 1st, but not in time!
AND OGASAWARA IS CONTINUING PAST 3RD TO HOME!!!
Is Anan's injury affecting his play behind the plate? Either way, two miscues mean that Hachinohe leads 1-0!
Shimohata with a first pitch single through the right side! Runners on 1st and 2nd for Hachinohe!
Fuijita hits a high ball to left! Nishioka running back, leaps, it's over his head!! He tumbles as the ball rolls to the wall! Both runners score on Fujita's triple and it's 3-0 now for Hachinohe!
And with 2 down, Tanaka with a single to right! Fujita comes in and it's 4-0!
Tanaka gets picked off of 1st to end the inning, but going into the break, Hachinohe Koudai leads 4-0!
Just as Hachinohe gets their lead, Nakayama gets them into trouble. Morisaki singles back up the middle and then he walks Tanaka.
And now Tano laces one into center! Manrui for Eimei!
And Sakaguchi singles through the right side! It's 4-1 now and still manrui!
Anan with a sac fly to center and it's 4-2!
Nishioka in a battle against Nakayama. Continues to foul off pitches...
11th pitch... Driven to center!! Shimohata leaps!! Over his head and off the wall!!!! Tano scores! Sakaguchi rounding 3rd... HE SCORES!!! Douten!!!!! It's a game tying triple!! 4-4!!
Kitamura flies out to center to end the inning, but Eimei has come right back to level the score! It's a new ball game!!
Hachinohe Koudai gets a 2-out runner, but Anan this time makes a good throw to 2nd when Toyokawa tries to steal 2nd.
The teams seem to have settled down now. Nakayama retires the side in order recording 2 K's.
Ogasawara starts off the inning with a single back up the middle, but instead of bunting, Hasegawa-kantoku elects to have Nakayama swing away...
... and he grounds into the 6-4-3 double play. A pop up by Shimohata ends the inning and we quickly move to the 8th tied at 4.
One down for Eimei and Tano singles past a diving Fujita into center. Kagawa-kantoku elects to bunt the runner over for a one-time chance.
But Anan hits a comebacker that Nakayama fields for the 3rd out.
Fujita with a single up the middle. Then on on a grounder by Tanaka, Kitamura boots the ball! Everyone's safe and Fujita advances to 3rd!
They call the hit and run and Tanaka grounds one to 2nd. Only play is to 1st, but Fujita stays at 3rd.
Still in a pinch, it looks like they're intentionally walking Miyazaki to create the force. But no! After 2-0, they pitch to him! Then another pitchout! They're trying to keep Miyazaki guessing!
But eventually Miyazaki walks and it is manrui for Nakamura and Hachinohe.
Nakamura with a hit to the right center field gap! That's right in the middle of the outfielders! Everyone comes in to score and Hachinohe takes a 7-4 lead!!!
Toyokawa with the squeeze bunt and he lays it down perfectly! Nakamura scores and it's 8-4 Hachinohe!
Ogasawara flies out to left to end the inning, but the damage has been done. Does Eimei have another 4-run rally left in them?
Nishioka with a chance at the cycle with a home run, but I think he'll settle for getting on base.
That he does. A strikeout that gets away from Ogasawara allows him to reach base.
But Kitamura grounds out to 2nd and a comebacker from Hirai means there's 2 down.
Nakauchi with a drive to right... but foul... that'll only get back half of the deficit though... count goes full...
SANSHIN! Nakauchi strikes out on an inside pitch and Eimei goes home after a crushing loss. But they can say they competed though. Rallying from down 4 once, and hanging in against Hachinohe Koudai Dai-ichi.
As for Hachinohe Koudai Dai-ichi, they'll have to prep now for Narita. Not an easy task by any means.