NEWS IN HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL

Last modified April 3, 2014

86th Spring High School Baseball Championship
Games kicked off on Mar 21. For the first time in 27 years Ikeda High School which groomed baseball stars was back. On Mar 22 it played and clinched the game against Kainan in the 9th inning. But it was eliminated in the 2nd round. A extended game was played between Kiryu Daiichi and Hiroshima Shinjo after they played 15 innings tied. On Mar 29, the game between the 2 teams ended 4 to 0 for Kiryu Daiichi. It lost to Ryukokudai Heian in the quarterfinal. Ryukokudai Heian advanced to the finals, and beat Riseisha 6 to 2 on April 3 to win the high school baseball title for the first time.

95th High School Baseball Championship
Under the sizzling sun, the championship took off on Aug 8. Looking on, former Yankees Hideki Matsui as his high school plays at the championship for the first time in 6 years, but was knocked out in the first round. One of the players in the spotlight, 156 cm tall Shota Chiba of Hanamaki Higashi High School which made it to the semi-finals. He kept on fouling pitches, to tire the opposing pitcher. For instance in the game against Tokushima's Naruto in the quarter-final, the pitch made to him was one forth of the total. The final game was played between Morioka Gakuen of Miyazaki and Maebashi Ikuei of Gunma. Maebashi won for the first time in its very first appearance at the championship in Koshien. It won 4 to 3. The even closed on Aug 22.

85th Spring High School Baseball Championship
The games started in Koshien on Mar 22. Saibi of Ehime's pitcher quickly took the spotlight. He's Tomohiro Anraku. Urawa Gakuin of Saitama was represented by its slugger Ryota Takada who hit home runs in 3 consecutive games. The 2 teams advanced to the finals on Apr 3. Anraku who had pitched 3 complete games before this was starting again. In the 5th inning, Anraku lost control and gave up 7 runs in that inning alone. He was off the mound in the 7th inning. Urawa won 17 to 1, clinching the championship title for the first time.

94th High School Baseball Championship
From Aug 8, the championship started in Koshien. On the 2nd day the championship witnessed a record. Tokogakuin's pitcher Yuki Matsui struck out 22 batters of Imabari Nishi, breaking the championship record of 19. He shut out Imabari Nishi as well. Then in the 2nd game he pitched he struck out 19 and won the game against Josho Gakuin. On Aug 20, in the quarterfinals against Kosei Gakuin, he struck out 15, but lost the game 0 to 3.

84th Spring High School Baseball Championship
The championship was opened on Mar 21 by a moving speech on the hope for recovery from the captain of Ishinomaki Ko. From the very first day, pitchers compared to Yu Darvish pitched against eachother. Both are over 190 cm tall. Osaka Toin defeated Hanamaki. The final day was delayed by a day due to a storm. It was held on Apr 4. Osaka Toin defeated Kosei frum Aomori and won the championship for the first time. It's 7 to 3.

93rd High School Baseball Championship
For the championship which kicked off on Aug 6, the focus was on high schools representing prefectures hardest hit by the Mar 11 earthquake and tsunami. Representing Tohoku or northeast Japan, Aomori's Kousei Gakuin made it to the final. However in the game on Aug 20 against West Tokyo's Nichidai Sanko, it succumbed to a devastating loss. The game finished 0 to 11. Nichidai Sanko won the championship title. The main contributer is pitcher Kentaro Yoshinaga who pitched in 6 games in a row.

83rd Spring High School Baseball Championship
Should the tournament be held or not. That's the question that was raised following a massive earthquake and tsunami which hit northeast Japan. But the green light was given. It opened on Mar 23, 2011. A minute of silence was observed. The captain of Okayama's Soshigakuen gave a terrific speech, explaining how he and many in the game were born the year of the 1995 Kobe earthquake. He expressed his condolences to the bereaved in the latest disaster, and his support to those who are trying to overcome the difficult times. And he said that the best he and his colleagues can do was to give their outmost in the games, and vowed to do so. The team representing the hardest hit by the quake and tsunami, Tohoku high school unfortunately lost in the first round. The final was played between Tokaidai Sagami and Kyushu Kousaidai Fuzoku on Apr 3. The Kanagawa based school won 6 to 1. It's the school's 2nd spring victory. It's also broken the hit record with 74 hits in 5 games.

92nd High School Baseball Championship
The games began on Aug 8. Many games were played in the sizzling heat surpassing 35 degrees celsious. And many games were as hot. New stars have been born. They're pitchers who in the end faced eachother in the final game on Aug 21. It's Tokaidai Sagami's Shinta Hifumi, and Konan's Yosuke Shimabukuro. Hifumi, however had a rough time against Konan. In one inning, he gave us 7 runs.He gave up a total 13. Konan won 13 to 1. It's the first school from Okinawa to win the summer championship.

82nd Spring High School Baseball Championship
The games took off on March 21 with pitchers in the spotlight. But the person who came into the spotlight was a vetern manager of Kaisei High School. 58 year old Naomichi Nonomura spoke after his team's defeat to Wakayama Prefecture's Koyo said it was shameful his team lost to the team and wanted to commit harakiri or cut his stomach. Koyo won a special berth set aside for 3 schools among 32 schools in the nation that have gained special recognition from the high school federation. Nonomura later tendered his resignation from his post. The final was played between Okinawa's Konan and Tokyo's Nichidaisan on Apr 3. Its for the first time in 21 years the final game went into extra innings. It was in the 12th inning, a throw dropped at first base changed the mood for Nichidaisan. It's lost 5 runs that inning and the game finished 5 to 10. It's Konan's first ever championship victory.

91st High School Baseball Championship
The game began on Aug 8. It began with a scare. It's the H1N1 virus. Players of Tenri and Risshodai Shonan were hit by the virus. In Risshodai's case, 3 core players were unable to join the team on Aug 19. With more players infected, the team advance to the quarterfinals where it lost to Nihon Bunri. Nihon Bunri became the finalist, playing against Chukyodai Chukyo on Aug 24. It appeared that it would be an easy game from Chukyo, but in the 9th inning, Nihon Bunri hit runs after run. The game ended 10 to 9 for Chukyo. It's the 7th victory for Chukyo or the most of any other high school teams.

81th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
Only 1 day of games had to be delayed in this tourney which kicked off on Mar 21. The final game was played on April 2 between Iwate's Hanamaki Higashi and Nagasaki's Seiho. It was in the 7th inning, Seiho hit in a run. In the 9th, Hanamaki players hit him on base, but short of hitting home a runner. Seiho became the first school from Nagasaki to win the national title. Ace pitcher Takeru Imamura lost only 1 run in 5 games.

90th High School Baseball Championship
The championship opened on Aug 1, 2008. It's about a week earlier than usual in consideration of its overlapping with the Olympic Games in Beijing. As this championship celebrates exactly 90 years, past high school starts participated in the opening ceremony. They include Masumi Kuwata, Nobuyuki Kagawa, Eiji Bando were among them. The ball to start off the game was thrown from a helicopter. The final on Aug 18 was filled with feats. Osaka Toin blasted with Shoma Okumura's grand slam. Pitcher Yuta Fukushima hurled over the distance a shut out game. Osaka Toin beat Shizuoka's Tokoha Gakuen Kikugawa 17 to 0.

80th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The tourney opened on Mar 22, 2008. On Mar 28, Kagoshima Kogyo nor Heian could end the game in the 15th inning. There was a rematch after that which in the end Heian won. On Mar 30, a rematch was held which Heian clinched 1 to 0. But Heian lost in the quarter-finals. On Apr 4, the final was played between Okinawa Shobaku and Saitama's Seibo Gakuen faced eachother. The Okinawa school won 9 to 0. It's the 2nd time for them to clinch the spring tourney.

89th High School Baseball Championship
On Aug 8, 49 schools representing 4081 schools marched into Koshien Stadium for the opening ceremony. On Aug 9 a new star was born. It's Yoshinori Sato of Sendai Ikuei High School. He struck out 17 in a 4 to 2 game against Chiben Wakayama. The final game was played between Saga Kita and Koryo of Hiroshima on Aug 22. Koryo took the lead but Saga's Hiroshi Soejima grand slammed in the 8th inning. For the first time Saga won the high school baseball championship.

79th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The tournament began on Mar 23. One of the star players, Osaka Toin's Sho Nakata. Mar 28 was his big day. He had 2 homers in a row. It's the first time since Hideki Matsui in 1992, that a high school player achieved such a feat. But his team lost on Mar 31 to Tokiwa Kikukawa of Shizuoka Prefecture. Tokiwa Kikukawa advanced to the final, and defeated Gifu Prefecture's Ogaki Nishidaiko 6 to 5 on Apr 3.

88th High School Baseball Championship
On Aug 6, the tournament kicked off at Koshien Stadium. Many of the matches this year were really popular. To start with, the match between Osaka Toin and Yokohama attracted a sell out crowd. Osaka Toin's slugger, for instance was compared to pro baseball super star Kazuhiro Kiyohara. In all, during the 16-day tournament there were 60 home runs. The championship, in all, drew 852,000 fans. The final was very exciting. Komadai Tomakomai of Hokkaido had the chance to win its 3rd championship in a row. Waseda Jitsugyo of Tokyo, the alma mater of super star Sadaharu Oh, and Daisuke Araki had finished 2nd twice. The game on Aug 20 was played 15 innings and was still a 1 to 1 draw. So for the first time in 37 years, the final had to be played again on Aug 21. Pitcher Yukio Saito,the new heart throb, hurled over the distance and Waseda won 4 to 3.

78th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
It opened on the muddy field of Koshien Stadium on Mar 23. A long game was played on Mar 29, between Waseda Jitsugyo and Kansai of Okayama. It stayed 7 to 7 until the 15th inning limit.The teams played again the next day. Waseda clinched the game 3 to 4 to advance to the quarter finals. But it lost in the quarter finals. The final game was played on Apr 4 between Yokohama and Seiho of Nagasaki. Yokohama blasted and broke the high school final record by winning 21 to 0. It's Yokohama's 3rd tournament victory.

87th High School Baseball Championship
Just 2 days before the tournament kicked off, Koichi Prefecture's representing team was suspended. It was found that Meitoku Gijuku was hiding troubles at the school. Instead Kochi High School was suddenly ordered to fill in the place. Students assembled in time for the opening ceremony on Aug 6. The team played on August 10 against Nichidai San Ko. But it lost 2 to 6. On Aug 13, a record tie was marked in the history of high school baseball. Pitcher Takanobu Tsujiuchi of Osaka Toin struck out 19 batters in the 9-inning game. He's the 5th player to do so. Then on Aug 18, his teammate, Ryosuke Hirata marked another record. He slammed one home run in a game to tie with the record set by the Giants Kazuhiro Kiyohara. Osaka Toin lost in the semi-finals the next day in a 10 inning game, 5 to 6 to Hokkaido's Komadai Tomakomai. The championship went to Komadai Tomakomai by defeating Kyoto Gaidai Nishi 5 to 3. It's the team's 2nd summer title in a row.

77th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The tournament was supposed to take off on Mar 23. But due to rain, only the opening ceremony was held. And for the first time, students were ordered to wear regular sneakers instead of their spikes because the ground was muddy. The final game was held on Apr 4. Aikodai Meiden of Aichi Prefecture and Kagoshima's Kamimura Gakuen which participated in the tourney for the first time clashed. Aikodai which is known as Seattle Mariners star Ichiro Suzuki overwhelmed its opponent 9 to 2.

86th High School Baseball Championship
The tournament took of on Aug 7, 2004. The star was again Yu Darvish of Tohoku High School. He pitched 2 shut out games. On Aug 17, he was about to shut out again. But an error by the 3rd baseman changed everything. Chiba Keizaidaifuzoku clinched the game in the 10th inning, 3 to 1. The final game on Aug 22 was played against Saibi from Ehime and Komadai Makomai from Hokkaido. It was a competitive game which Komadai Makomai clinched 13 to 10, to become the first champion from Hokkaido.

76th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
On March 23, 2004, the tournament opened. A feat was achieved on Mar 26, by Tohoku High School's pitcher Yu Darvish. It's a no hitter. He allowed 2 walks and another runner on base from an error and hurled over the distance in a 2 to 0 game against Kumamoto Kogyo. Darvish is half Iranian and has become a star pitcher in the 2003 high school games. The team, however, lost on Apr 2 to Saibi High School. Tohoku's pitcher Kenshu Makabe sucumbed to a 3 run in the final inning. The game ended 6 to 7. Darvish did not hurl that game since his shoulder was in pain. In the final game held April 4, Saibi defeated Aikodaimeiden 6 to 5. Saibi has had a baseball club only for 2 whole years.

85th High School Baseball Championship
Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi as the first Japanese premier ever gave the ceremonial pitch to open the championship on Aug 7, 2003. And it was a good pitch as he hurled a strike. The player in the spotlight Kenta Soga, who lost his left foot when he was 5, fielded well throughout the game on Aug 8. And his team Imabari Nishi beat Nichidai Tohoku in the first game. But the team lost in the 2nd round. The final game was held on Aug 23. Tohoku High School scored first. But Joso Gakuin High School clinched the lead and won the game 4 to 2. It's the first championship victory for the high school from Ibaraki Prefecture.

75th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The games opened on Mar 22, 2003. The game on Mar 31 made history It's between Toyodaihimeji and Hanasakitokuharu high schools. It was a tie still by the end of the 15th inning. And according to a new rule, it was to be played again the next day. So it was. But again the game went into extra inning. In the 10th inning, the pitchers wild pitch finished the game giving Toyodaihimeji the victory 6 to 5. Toyodaihimeiji, however, lost in the semi-finals. The final games was played between Yokohama and Koryo high schools on Apr 3. It was a one sided game where Koryu scored 15 runs against 3. It's the 3rd spring tourney victory for the school.

84th High School Baseball Championship
The tournament opened on Aug 8, 2002 as usual at the Koshien Stadium. The 49 teams that clinched the berth from 4163 high schools nationwide. It's the most number of schools to aim for the Koshien dream in the summer. On Aug 18, for the first time in the history of the championship, brother schools faced eachother. They're Chiben Wakayama and Chiben Gakuen. Wakayama won 7 to 3 to advance to the quarterfinals. And the final on Aug 21 was between Kochi's Meitokugijuku and Chiben Wakayama. Meitoku clinched the game and the championship cup 7 to 2. It's the school's first championship crown although it's played in the summer championship 8 times.

74th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The invitational games took off on Mar 25 with 32 teams. On the 4th day, a scandal. A staff of the Fukuoka Kodai Joto baseball club was discovered to be sending messages to his team from behind the net on the opponent's pitches. He's banned from attending any more games. The school defeated Utsunomiya 6 to 5 in the 11th inning. The win was, nevertheless, regarded as valid. It was on the 8th day of the games that Fukuoka played again. It was against the famous Meitoku Gijuku. Fukuoka lost 2 to 7. On Apr 5, the final game was held between Hotoku Gakuen and Natutokokyo. The victory went to Hotoku which won 8 to 2.

83rd High School Baseball Championship
The game opened on Aug 8, 2001 in sweltering heat. More than 30 people were treated from sun stroke that day. And on Aug 11, a super pitcher was on. He's Hayato Terahara of Nichinangakuen. He hurled pitches as fast as 151 km. And he struck out 10 in 8 innings. His team defeated Yotsukaichi 8 to 1. And on Aug 16, Terahara broke the high school record which was held by Daisuke Matsuzaka now with the Seibu Lions pitched a speed ball of 154 km. Terahara came on the relief the game, and going into extra inning, his team won 6 to 4. On Aug 19 Terahara's school played against Yokohama High School in the quarter finals. The game was tied in the 9th inning. Yokohama got bases loaded and batted home 2 runners. It won 4 to 2. The final game was delayed by a day due to a typhoon. On Aug 22, Omi representing Shiga Prefecture, and Nichidaisan from Tokyo clashed. The Tokyo high school won 5 to 2--its first summer high school championships victory.

73rd Spring High School Baseball Tournament
There were 2 more teams than usual playing in Koshien or 34 in all. A 21st century berth was available this time. One team which was lucky was Okinawa's Ginoza High School. But it proved that it was qualified by reaching the semi-finals. And the final game was played between Joso Gakuin of Ibaraki and Sendai Ikuei on Apr 4. Joso clinched the game by an inch, 7 to 6. It's the first time ever for Joso to win the high school tournament.

82nd High School Baseball Championship
The prefectural representative from a total 4119 high schools kicked off the game at Koshien Stadium on Aug.8. The 3rd game on Aug. 11 was hot. Yataro Sakamoto of Urawagakuin struck out 19. It's a tie record at Koshien. And the first time in 54 years that 19 was achieved in one game. He only gave up one base hit and the team won 2 to 1 over Yawata Shogyo. A fullhouse was observed on Aug. 15. That's because high schools historicallly famous for strong baseball teams and star players were lined up. A crowd of 55,000 saw PL Gakuin defeat Meitokugijuku 9 to 4. As to the result of the final, Chiben Wakayama defeated Tokaidai Urayasu 11 to 6.

72nd Spring High School Baseball Tournament
Before the start of the event, the high school baseball federation questioned whether Tsuruga Kehi High School should remain in the game. That's because one of its students was caught for driving without a license. Tsuruga Kehi decided to pull out from the tournament on Mar.7. As to the outcome of the tourney, on Apr. 4, the final game was held between Chiben Wakayama and Tokaidai Sagami. Tokai, with a 4 to 2 win clinched the high school tourney title for the first time. The school is located in Yokohama and has not been at top domestic level since it's superstar Tatsunori Hara left years ago.

81st High School Baseball Championship
Games took off on Aug. 8 in sizzling heat. On Aug. 11, all games were rained out for the first time in 6 years. On Aug. 16, 1999 the miraculous Shinminato from Toyama Prefecture played against Kagoshima's Shonana. Shinminato reversed a game 5 runs behind in the 1st round of the championship. Fans were looking forward to another such game, but Shinminato was defeated 1 to 10. The final game was fought between Kiryu Daiichi and Okayama RidaiFuzoku on Aug. 21. Okayama was the first to score. Kiryu not only caught up, it place in runs after runs, in the end finished 14 to 1. It is the first time a team from Gunma Prefecture clinched the number one title.

71st Spring High School Baseball Tournament
The games began on Mar. 29, 1999. In the first round already, the teams that have excited baseball fans with a competitive game last summer, PL Gakuen and Yokohama High School faced eachother. Yokohama, with ace pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka having graduated, halted its winning streak at Koshien Park by losing. Okinawa Shogaku and Mito Shogyo advanced to the final. It was especially a feat for Okinawa because they defeated PL Gakuen to proceed this far in a 12 inning game. In any case, neither teams have not only never made this far, no teams from their prefectures ever had. The victory went to Okinawa in a 7 to 2 game.

80th High School Baseball Championship
A record number of schools or 4102 competed for the increased number of berths of 55 for memorial championship which opened on Aug. 6. Then final was held on Aug. 22 between Kyoto Seisho and Yokohama High School. Yokohama won 3 to 0. Yokohama also was the winner of the Spring High School Baseball Tournament. Pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka shut out 3 teams. Here are other highlights of the championship held in Koshien Stadium.

* a 17 inning game
A very competitive game was held between PL Gakuen and Yokohama High Schools. Yokohama eventually clinched the game. This was probably the most exciting game at Koshien this summer.

* 2 no hitter games
Kagoshima Jitsugyo's Toshiya Sugiuchi completes the 1st of this championship in the first round. Daisuke Matsuzaka of Yokohama High School marked it in the final game which gave his team the championship.

* bumble bees attack
A herd of bumble bees, perhaps 200 of tehm swarmed around the 3rd base seats. This was during the game between Okayama Joto and Komadai Iwamizawa on Aug. 12. 3 people were actually stung.

* an accident under the outfield fence
Nichidai Tohoku's left fielder Watanabe tried to go for the ball hit by Ube Shogyo's Shimizu. This was on Aug. 10. He got stuck under the outfield fence as he slid for the ball. While he struggle to get his hand out, Shimizu came home. He was finally freed when people helped him out. Nichidai Tohoku unfortunately lost the game.

* a whooping score in a local tournament
In Aomori Prefecture, northern Japan, the 2nd round was held locally on July 20. Toogijuku batted in 32 runs in the 1st inning. Now don't be surprised there, because in all, the students succeed in scoring 122 runs. It's of course a world record. The previous Japan record was marked in Saitama Prefecture's local game in 1936. However, Toogijuku lost in the 3rd round to Tanabe in a 2 to 14 game.

70th Spring High School Baseball Tournament
36 high school teams marched into Koshien Stadium near Osaka marking the start of the 70th Spring High School Baseball Tournament on Mar. 25. 4 more schools have been added just for this year's spring event to celebrate the 70th anniversary. The player's oath was not the kind you would usually expect. Captain of Kyoto Nishi High School used sign language while he spoke saying he promises to make the games as exciting as the Nagano Olympic Winter Games and the Paralympics. The announcement in the stadium was made by blind students. One high school team was struck with an unfortunate incident. 12 members of Nihon Koku High School from Yamanashi Prefecture showed symptom of food poisoning the day before. Among them, 3 were regular players on the high school team. The team, however was able to beat Sendai Ikuei 4 to 3.

The final game was played between Kandai Ichi of Osaka and Yokohama High School on Apr. 8. Yokohama won the game and the spring tournament 3 to 0. It's been 25 years since the last time the team had clinched the crown. The Yokohama players returned to their hometown that same day. They were welcomed by about 500 people at the bullet train station. The entire tournament drew a crowd of 514,000. This is 165,000 more than the previous year.

IN 1997
More school can participate in the championship
The Japan High School Federation announced on Dec. 17, that 55 schools will play at Koshien Stadium for the summer championship in 1998. That's up 6 schools from the average year. The days of competition too will increase to 16 days, or 2 more days than usual. This is a special move to commemorate the 80th anniversary of high school baseball championship. The participants will be limited to 49 again after this one.

79th High School Baseball Championship
4093 high schools all over Japan entered the summer high school baseball tournament. The champion of each prefecture won the berth to the championship at Koshien Stadium which is between the cities of Osaka and Kobe. 2 teams each represented Tokyo and Hokkaido, therefore in all, 49 teams were in Koshien to kick off the championship which opened on August 8. Games were held in the sizzling heat. None of the games were rained out in the 14 days

The final game was played between Chiben Wakayama High School of Wakayama and Heian High School of Kyoto. Chiben was the first to score in the 3rd inning. But Heian came back with 3 RBIs in the 5th inning. Chiben succeeded in catching up in the 7th inning and reversed the game in the following. Chiben won 6 to 3. The star of this year's championship, pitcher Tomoya Kawaguchi of Heian hurled 820 pitches or 6 complete games in a row at Koshien, unfortunately, losing the last won. Meanwhile, the 79th champion finished with the highest team batting average in the history of the high school baseball championship or with .406.



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