(photo courtesy of Biglobe news)
Road to Haru Koushien
- lost Morioka Dai-ichi 0-6
- def Kounan Gijyuku 9-5
- def Tairadate 13-3 (6 inn)
- def Touno 11-0 (6 inn)
- def Fukuoka 2x-1 (11 inn)
- def Morioka Shiritsu 7-1
- def Hanamaki Nougyou 6-4 (10 inn)
- lost Moriokadai Fuzoku 0-9
- lost Hachinohe Gakuin Kousei 0-2
10 men. Just 10 men was able to get to the Iwate finals. 10 men to get to the super-regionals.
10 men held Hachinohe Gakuin Kousei to just 2 runs.
Yes their road was easy. Yes they got blown out by Moriokadai Fuzoku. But this is the story that I had in my head when I believed in the romanticism of this game.
Since the team is just 10 players, there really isn’t much to delve into. Their only pitcher in all likelihood is Kohiruimaki Keita (小比類巻 圭汰). Doing yeoman’s work, he pitched in 2 enchousen games, the second of which gave him absolutely no rest to face Moriokadai Fuzoku. So he could easily be forgiven for his collapse in that game. Against Hachinohe Gakuin Kousei he fared much better, giving up 2 runs on 9 hits, striking out 5 and walking 2.
Where the team will really struggle is on offense. In the two games against known teams, they went a combined 6-59 with 22 strikeouts and no walks. 2 of those hits came from RF Iwama Tatsuki (岩間 龍輝).
With 21st century teams it’s much harder to get information on them. They’re generally not followed, most do okay during the aki taikai but not well enough to garner coverage that can be parsed for information. The best video I could find was just an introduction to the team, their current situation with 10 men, and what they were doing to perhaps shore up things for the road ahead.
I won’t beat around the bush here. The team will be outmatched in almost any pairing they have. And if they get a really bad draw, it’s possible it could get really ugly. I hope that doesn’t happen. I hope they draw a lesser opponent and make a somewhat close game out of it. I don’t want to see their work done in by a blowout – even if they know the odds are against them.