Thursday, October 31, 2013

Aki Taikai Recap-to-date - Entering the final stretch!

With the exception of Tokyo, all Super-Regionals will be completed this weekend:

Kanto ex Tokyo
Well, there goes Narashino again... Starter Fukada gives up 2 runs early and the offense can't get going as they lose to Hakuoudai Ashikaga 3-1.  Kendai Takasaki seemed to have Yamanashi Gakuindai Fuzoku carrying a 3-1 lead into the final 2 innings, but a 3-spot in the 8th was their downfall.

On the other side, Yokohama starter Itou gives up 5 runs in the first inning, and while they wind up outhitting Sano Nichidai 11-9, they cannot make up the early deficit and lose 5-3. And finally, Kasumigaura gave a great fight against Kiryuu Dai-ichi and had stifled their offense. But with the score tied 1-1 in the bottom of the 9th, Kiryuu got runners on 1st and 2nd and #7 batter Onoda delivered the sayonara hit to center.

In the semifinals, Hakuoudai's Higa scattered 7 hits over 9 innings, giving up just 1 run in the 9th inning for a 3-1 win over Yamanashi Gakuindai Fuzoku. In the second game, Sano Nichidai had the tables turned on them. Kiryuu Dai-ichi scored 4 in the first inning, knocking starter Inaba out of the game and would go on to win 5-0.

So it'll be Hakuoudai Ashikaga and Kiryuu Dai-ichi will battle for the title while Yamanashi Gakuindai Fuzoku and Sano Nichidai will need to wait for the phone call.

The semifinals did not go as I expected. After the strong performance by Chinzei so far, they went out and got 1-hit by Okinawa Shougaku, losing 4-1. Admittedly, it is not a good showing.

Misato Kougyou's ace Inami struggled to keep Kamimura Gakuen's batters from reaching base as he surrendered 10 hits, but he constantly wiggled his way out of trouble as Misato would never trail, winning 5-1 to advance to the finals!

And so, just over 3 weeks to the day, Misato Kougyou and Okinawa Shougaku will do battle once again at Okinawa Cellular Stadium Naha! In the prefectural final, the teams were scoreless until the 9th when Misato scored 3 to win the title.

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