(picture courtesy of Daily Sports)
Fukui Koudai Fukui had come back from down so far and was a step away from winning the game, and on just one brainfart, the game was tied and the deadlock wasn’t to be broken.
It’s worse for Fukui Koudai Fukui because Suriishi played 11 innings and in the last 4 turned it over to a pitcher who wasn’t depended on during the fall, was called into duty and nursed the game home, but I’m not sure if he can do it again, but he might have to.
Actually, both teams are not only going with new Ps to start the game, but also different lineups.
Fukui Koudai Fukui
- SS (#4) Kitagawa Tomoya
- CF Yamauchi Takafumi
- 1B Inoue Kaito
- LF Yamagishi Asahi
- RF (#17) Satou Yuuto
- C (#13) Shimatani Genki
- 2B (#15) Oomori Momoto
- 3B (#16) Yamaoka Shouma
- P (#11) Katou Isami
- SS (#4) Asato Jyura
- LF Onodera Daiki
- 1B Yamashita Kouta
- 3B Toguchi Taisei
- RF (#14) Takayama Ryoutarou
- 2B (#18) Ookoshi Koutarou
- CF Imai Yuusuke
- C Oogaki Rentarou
- P (#13) Mukai Yoshiki
13:20 – First Pitch!
Mukai pretty much average velocity wise, mid-130s fastball with a reported changeup to go with the standard slider/curve combo.
He gets into early trouble with 1 down as after a base hit, a grounder from Kaito goes off Ookoshi and trickles into right. That unlucky break is returned back though when after a pop out to Oogaki, Satou hits a hard grounder to the left side that hits Yamauchi on his way to 3rd.
Kendai Takasaki gets their own chance right off the bat. Asato turns around a fastball for a single to right, steals 2nd and then advances to 3rd when Onodera directs a ground ball to 1st.
Next thing you know Yamashita hits a ball back up past the drawn in infield and it’s 1-0 Kendai Takasaki.
But with 2 down, it looks like the outcome may already be decided as on three consecutive pitches, Takayama, Ookoshi and Imai get base hits, rapidly increasing the lead to 4-0.
We knew Fukui Koudai Fukui was hesitant to sub out their ace, and perhaps there was good reason for it. On the other hand Mukai isn’t exactly glove perfect, but his breaking pitches have good movement that it fools the Fukui Koudai Fukui batters enough to get the outs he needs – though not without the occasional walk.
The facade finally falls apart in the 4th. Having already given up a single and a triple to make the score 6-0 with no out and no on, Mukai grounds to 2nd to end the inning. Or it would have had it not rode up Oomori’s arm and sky high.
After that, the next two batters get singles to load the bases. #12 Nakata comes in, only to give up a grand slam to Yamashita (his 2nd GS of the tournament). 10-0.
Fukui Koudai Fukui avoids the shutout thanks to an error in the 9th, but a baserunner forgetting the number of outs makes the final score stand at 10-2.
They were hard pressed to come back in this game, and even more so when Suriishi was stood down. The result then was understandable as Kendai Takasaki led wire-to-wire. Plus, they saved their other pitchers for the stretch run.