Fri, Nov 15, 2002 - Page 24 News List

Taiwan wins bragging rights over S Korea

CHANGING PLACES Taiwan lost its top ranking in the region when it lost to South Korea at the Asian Games, but got a measure of revenge with a victory in Havana

STAFF WRITER , WITH AP, HAVANA

Taiwan took on and beat Asia's official No. 1 team on Wednesday, defeating South Korea 4-2 in Havana at the Intercontinental Baseball Cup.

Taiwan had eight hits to South Korea's six hits, with Tsai Feng-an (蔡豐安) hitting a homer in the second inning and putting his team ahead at the beginning of the game. It was Tsai's fourth home run at the tournament.

In the seventh inning, Taiwan pinch hitter Chen Yuan-chia (陳元甲) had a three-base hit.He nipped home for a run when South Korea's pitcher was wild.

South Korea caught up with Taiwan in the eighth inning, scoring two runs and the game went into extra innings.

Eventually Taiwan's Chen Chia-wei (陳家偉) and Tseng Hua-wei (曾華偉) added two more runs in the twelfth inning after South Korea made two fielding errors.

In other news, Panama became the last team to reach the second round of the Intercontinental Baseball Cup, beating Brazil 7-0, while Venezuela also qualified by beating the Dominican Republic 5-3.

Late on Wednesday, Cuba dominated China 21-1 and Mexico got a surprise 8-1 victory over Italy even though it ultimately failed to advance. China and Brazil were also eliminated.

The classifying round ended Wednesday night after two late games, Japan vs. the Netherlands and South Korea vs. Taipei. After a day of rest yesterday, the second round was to begin today.

Sherman Obando, a former player in the American big leagues, hit a single to score Panama's first run against Brazil. Teammate Luis Iglesias and Freddy Herrera helped score a rash of runs in the second inning while Rodriguez Gutierrez brought in the last run to plate in the seventh.

Alvaro Hernandez, who in eight innings allowed three hits, struck out nine batters and conceded two bases for balls, got the win for Panama. Brazil's pitcher was Rodrigo Maciel.

Three Venezuelan pitchers combined to beat the Dominicans. Both teams qualified for the next round, which runs Friday through Sunday. The finals are Tuesday and Wednesday next week.

Venezuelan relief pitcher Jose Blanco Flores won the game, refusing to allow a single run and only two hits during almost five full innings.

The Dominican pitcher allowed four runs in his five innings on the mound.

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