Meitoku’s lineup was even stronger than its reputation, having two big innings scoring three runs in 2nd and four in 7th. Collecting 16 hits to score ten runs off the powerhouse Nara’s Chiben Gakuen. Meitoku’s lineup was tough, watching balls to hit only strikes. Chiben started their ace pitcher Oda (#1 LHP) who allowed eight hits, three walks and 4 runs in his six innings. Chiben then put their second pitcher Urahara (#10 RHP) like they have usually done in the preliminary but the Meitoku’s lineup was beyond Chiben’s expectation. Meitoku’s pinch hitter Tanaka hit three run homer after 5th hitter Mori brought a runner in by single. The slugger Okamoto (#3 RHP) took over to pitch after Urahara and would give up two runs before the freshman Murakami (#11 RHP) went up to the hill.
Chiben scored two right after giving up three runs in top of 3rd. The Meitoku’s ace Kishi sometimes struggled to locate his cutball that Chiben’s lineup did not let go. Kishi, who has pitched eight games at Koshien, is one of the pitchers to watch in this year’s Koshien.
Meitoku’s pitcher & captain seem to draw the media’s attention but it was the lineup that showed the strength during today’s game.
Chiben’s fielding stood out. Second baseman Iwata appressively fielded to play home to prevent a run. Third baseman Hirooka fielded to ruin the perfect drag bunt made by Meitoku’s speedster Onishi. The well trained fielding should get credit especially in their accurate throwing.
Here is the you tube video for the game highlights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-W_I8AagKQ