(live screencap courtesy of Mainichi Broadcasting System)
One of the things we can do now is to look at the selection show as it were and look at the teams who just missed and what that may say about the JHBF and their selection process. Some areas will be much more straightforward, but as mentioned in other articles, some were not.
- Sapporo Dai-ichi
No surprise here, they were the runner-ups and should have been the first out.
- Sakata Minami
- Hachinohe Kosei Gakuin
That’s a minor surprise. The committee thought that if Tohoku was to get a 3rd team, it would have been Sakata Minami over Hachinohe Gakuin Kousei. That means they did not value their schedule at all, this despite that Sakata Minami did not win their prefecture but did beat both Tsuruoka Higashi and Aomori Yamada.
- Keiou Gijyuku
- Yamanashi Gakuin
Keiou was no surprise as first team out as they were competing with Nichidai-san for the floating bid. Also, it probably made sense that Yokohama wasn’t the 2nd team out as both they and Keiou are in Kanagawa and Yokohama did lose to Keiou in the prefectural final. Yamanashi Gakuin did blank their last 4 opponents in the prefecturals including one against a normally offense-minded Nihon Koukuu. With their closer loss to Toukaidai Ichihara Bouyou it certainly put them above Chuo Gakuin and in this case above Yokohama.
- Toritsu Hino
Again no surprise as they were the semifinalists. Hino probably gets the edge because of their win over Nichidai Tsurugaoka and their general good standing year after year despite failing to reach Koushien.
- Chuukyoudai Chuukyou
No surprise. Chuukyoudai Chuukyou could have even competed for the 2nd bid out of the region but really had no chance because they had to compete with a fellow prefectural school.
- Nihon Koukuu Ishikawa
- Nihon Bunri
Nihon Koukuu Ishikawa must be kicking themselves for not holding out their comeback against Fukui Koudai Fukui. Their resume was really good having to defeat both Yuugakukan and Seiryou to win the prefecture and defeated a Sekine Gakuen team by a larger margin than Nihon Bunri did.
- Wakayama Higashi
- Uenomiya Taishi
This here in particular bothers me the most. Uenomiya Taishi had a great run defeating Riseisha to win Osaka. However, because they wound up being the 3rd best team in the Super-Regionals, they were given absolutely no shot at the Meiji Jingu bid. Takada Shougyou’s resume was certainly weaker and what’s worse, a round of 16 team in Wakayama Higashi was put above them. What’s even more egregious is that in addition the narrow loss to Takada Shougyou the team just played 3 games to win Wakayama prefecture with their best opponent being Wakayama Shougyou.
Wakayama Higashi and Uenomiya Taishi even had a common opponent in Kouyasan. Both teams had to rally from behind with Wakayama Higashi winning 4-3 and Uenomiya Taishi winning 7-5. Ugh.
- Tottori Jyouhoku
- Hiroshima Shinjyou
Nothing shocking here. Tottori Jyouhoku was the other semifinalist and Hiroshima Shinjyou annihilated Shiritsu Kure 15-3 in the prefectural semifinal.
The two semifinalists here as well. Both teams had to win the 3rd place game to get to the super-regionals, but Eimei did win against Naruto Uzushio as well as 21st century invitee Nakamura.
- Kagoshima Jitsugyou
- Saga Shougyou
Kagoshima Jitsugyou makes perfect sense as the first team out with their 0-2 loss to eventual champions Fukuokadai Oohori. I’m surprised with the selection of Saga Shougyou though over Reimei. It certainly wouldn’t have been Houshou due to their 1-6 loss to Shuugakukan. But Reimei did defeat Kagoshima Jitsugyou in the prefectural final and then narrowly lost to the runner-up Toukaidai Fukuoka.
21st Century Teams
Rakusei was always on the outside looking in competing with Kozukata. But I would have figured Takachiho having cultural status and their attempts to revitalize the countryside region that is really suffering due to migration to the city could have been something to highlight. But instead Nakamura gets the western bid and Tajimi was always going to get the flex bid because the committee knew they were going to get a lot of people coming to their game(s).