Couple more Super-regionals to go...
Kanzei apparently was a one-shot deal and they're back to rebuilding as they lost in their first game in the prefecturals to Okayama Ridai Fuzoku 8-0...
Filling the gap is a familiar name - Soushi Gakuen. They dominated the prefecturals with their closest game being the final against Kurashiki Shougyou 8-4. And with Okayama hosting, it might be some good home cooking and a 2nd straight fall champion coming from Okayama.
Okayama Ridai Fuzoku made it to the semifinals, narrowly losing to Kurashiki Shougyou, and because Okayama is hosting they sneak in as the 4th team despite losing the consolation game to Okayama-ken Kyouei 9-6.
Setouchi, whose ace Yamaoka Daisuke carried the team to their first Koushien, couldn't repeat the feat without him as they suffered a mercy rule loss in the 3rd round of the prefecturals to Hiroshima Shougyou.
Kouryou and Jyousuikan somehow drew each other in the first round with Kouryou winning easily 7-1. Interestingly, run prevention - not run scoring was the MO for Kouryou, but they couldn't keep it up losing in the semifinals to Hiroshima Shinjyou 6-2. Hiroshima Shinjyou would win the title, defeating fellow C Team Soutoku 6-2.
Kouryou being sent to the consolation game almost guaranteed that they would go as the final team. And sadly (for me anyways) it came at the expense of Onomichi. They narrowly lost to Soutoku 5-4 in the semifinals and then got blown out 8-2, missing out on the super-regionals.
Man, just 23 schools participating in the Aki Taikai...
Tottori Jyouhoku, the natsu representative, after a slow start in a 3-2 win over Tottori Ikuei blew through the rest of the field, defeating Tottori Shougyou 9-3 in the finals.
Iwami claims the 3rd spot, defeating Kurayoshi Higashi 5-3.
Iwami Chisuikan, who finally made it to Koushien after a long hiatus, will not be coming back for the fall. They advanced out of the 1st stage, but was soundly defeated 10-4 to Izumo Nishi in the first game of the 2nd stage.
Kaisei didn't even get out of the 1st stage, and Risshoudai Shounan lost to Yasugi in the quarterfinals, meaning that there was an opportunity for 3 new schools to reach the super-regionals.
Sadly, Yasugi actually wound up being the odd team out! They were narrowly defeated by Taisha 3-2 in the semifinals and then were shutout by Daitou 2-0 in the 3rd place game! As for Taisha, they would defeat the aforementioned Izumo Nishi 4-3 (their 3rd straight 1-run game) to claim the title.
Tottori would wind up being the only prefecture to send their natsu representative to the super-regionals as Iwakuni Shougyou would not get past the 2nd round of the regionals.
Filling the void would be fellow school Iwakuni. They did struggle with a 1-0 win over Hikari in the quarterfinals, then allowed Takagawa Gakuen to almost come back from a 6-0 deficit before winning the title 8-6. Takagawa Gakuen is an enigma, having used a 7-spot in the 8th to pull away from Tokuyama Shoukou then turning around to defeat Nanyou Kougyou 4-3.
Joining the two in the super-regionals will be Ube Shougyou. They almost let Saikyou come back in their first game, did not look too impressive, but reversed a 6-0 loss to Takagawa Gakuen and defeated Sakuragaoka to advance.