The summer returned to Koushien in full force as the cameras were showing a lot of people. Some nice background information was provided as well as the commentators during the Heian-Chuykou game pointed out that Chukyou C Isomura‘s father and some of his brothers (if I recall this correctly, it was already way past 4 am over here, so I apologize beforehand if I messed this up) went to Koushien before him and they also had an interview with his father in the middle of the 6th inning.
Kansei Gakuin 関西学院 (Hyogo) – Sakata Minami 酒田南 (Yamagata) 7-3
This was Kansei Gakuin‘s first appearance at the summer tournament in 70 years so I guess the boys must have been quite nervous. If they were, they didn’t show it jumping ahead 2-0 after 3.5 innings. What was a little surprising was that their coach substituted the pitcher after only 2.1 innings. In relief he sent his catcher to the mound replacing him with a bench player. Interesting move. It paid dividends at first but in the 4th Sakata Minami responded with two runs of their own tying the game at two. Kansei regrabbed the lead in the 6th but Sakata Minami wasn’t going away quietly. They were held down eventually as Kansei will move to the next round. I will be looking forward to see the huge fan coreography of their supporters again. The players were all wearing what looked like a crescent moon on their sleeves and the same picture was resembled on the stands. Impressive.
Ryuukokudai Heian 龍谷大平安 (Kyoto) – Chuukyoudai Ckuukyou 中京大中京 (Aichi) 1-5
I stumbled across the name of Chukyou before so I always thought they must be some powerhouse whose team goes to the summer tournament on a regular basis (they already have won six times). Their opponents from Heian have been here before, winning three titles in the summer. So this looked like a very good match-up on paper. Too bad it was decided after only two innings. Heian was threatening in the first though, with a runner on third, but their cleanup hitter popped to center and Chukyou CF Iwatsuki made a brilliant shoestring catch to end the inning. Chukyou then went ahead with a 5-run 2nd and never looked back. Heian wasn’t able to respond, grabbing only one run off Chukyou‘s starter. Their big fan choreo didn’t help either, although it wasn’t nearly as impressive as the one we saw the game before (Heian was forming a big “H”).
Imari Nourin 伊万里農林 (Saga) – Yokohama Hayato 横浜隼人 (Kanagawa) 2-6
I think I found my team. At least when it comes to the design of their uniforms. Yokohama Hayato uses what looks like old Tigers uniforms with news logos on it. Completely looking alike. They were in a deadlock with Imari Nourin until the 5th inning when they pushed the game open with 3 runs. Yokohama Hayato were able to add 3 more in the next inning and all that Imari Nourin could to was put 2 runs on the board themselves. They had a chance in the bottom of the 9th, but stranded two runners.
Hamanaki Higashi 花巻東 (Iwate) – Nagasaki Nichidai 長崎日大 (Nagasaki) 8-5
Too bad I wasn’t able to watch this drama live on screen. Nagasaki Nichidai held favourites Hamanaki Higashi away with three homeruns, but in the end they lost it all in the 8th inning, when Hamanaki Higashi scored three runs on a bases clearing double. They added another run in the same inning. This one might look like a clear result on paper, but it seemed to have been a lot closer.