Our 3rd-6th bids for Natsu Koushien have been decided, and in some cases, we needed extra time!
Hokushou and ace Oogushi just had one last obstacle to returning to Koushien and that was Komadai Tomakomai. Perhaps ready to challenge again, #5 Koyama gave them the 2-0 lead in the 4th inning.
Ishii though couldn't make it last giving up 3 in the 6th and another in the 8th. Once again though and error plus a base hit from Koyama again would tie the game at 4 apiece.
It was then that the Komadai kantoku replaces Ishii with Yoshio... and it all went sideways.
Yoshio would give up 6 runs in the frame... and that would be that for securing Hokushou's 3rd title, and first in 3 years.
The pressure was evident for both Waseda Saga and Arita Kougyou as they were fighting for their first title. Neither pitcher was sharp as both offenses got hits early and often. Yet through 6, Arita Kougyou had built a 4-2 lead.
That would change when Tsuga delivered for Waseda giving them a 5-4 lead.
Down to their last out and the bases loaded Kuwahara would come through with a base hit to left to tie the game and send it into extras. One inning later, with the winning run 90 feet away and 2 down, SS Fujikawa would end it with a base hit through the left side giving Arita Kougyou their first title in their long school history!
In the battle between the prefectural heavyweights, starters Tanigawa (Nagasaki Nichidai) and Yamaguchi (Sasebo Jitsugyou) did not do a terrible job, but neither could go past 6 innings. By the time Taniguchi had left the mound, Nagasaki Nichidai held the slim 3-2 lead. Nichidai was 3 outs away from closing it out, but reliever Fukuda couldn't to it. With one out and runners at the corners Tazaki would deliver the douten RBI.
And in the 11th, it would be reliever Kinoshita who would deliver the sayonara base hit off of Kaneko to give Sasebo Jitsugyou their 2nd consecutive title (and 5th overall).
As highlighted on my twitter feed, Okinawa's final was broadcast on QAB.
Perhaps in an attempt to save the ace a couple of innings, Misato Kougyou's kantoku decided to start #12 Oonaka. It would be a fateful decision as leadoff batter Moromizato would triple to right center, followed by a base hit by Chinen to give Okinawa Shougaku a quick 1-0 lead.
After a fly to center advanced Chinen, Shibahiki would drive a ball to deep center. Kamita would catch it, but his throw in would short hop SS Nishikuratou and get by him allowing Chinen to score making it 2-0.
The next inning, ace Nakamine would come in, but it would wind up to be too late. For no matter how much Misato Kougyou would scrap a run together, Okinawa Shougaku would come right back. Eventually Nakamine would give in allowing a couple more runs giving Okinawa Shougaku the 5-2 win, and their 6th summer title (1st in 8 years).