Pan "Du Du" Wei-luen pitched six innings of one-run ball and Kao Guo-ching hit his 13th homer of the season to lead the President Lions past the Macoto Cobras in a 2-1 win in Tainan on Wednesday evening to sweep the two-game series.
With the win, Pan's eleventh in a row, the staff ace for the Lions not only tied the league mark for consecutive victories, but also upped the league-best winning total to eleven games, two more than the next best hurler, Gary Rath of the La New Bears.
"It's a team effort; not a one-man game," a modest Du Du said after the game, giving all the credit to his defense for coming up with several key plays that limited the seven base hits that Pan gave up to just one Cobras run.
Offensively for the home Lions, Kao's solo blast to deep-center off Pat Ahearne in the bottom of the fourth broke a 1-all draw that ended up being the difference in the game as both bullpens kept the opposing hitters at bay the rest of the way.
Hsieh "the Ugly" Jia-shien's two-out single up the middle off Pan with a runner on third got the Cobras on the board in the top of the first for a quick 1-0 lead before the Lions answered with the equalizer two innings later when Yang Song-hsuen singled in Yang Seng in the bottom of the third to tie things up at 1-1.
After Kao's solo homer made it 2-1 in favor of the Lions in the fourth, the contest suddenly turned into a defensive struggle with neither side able to score again.
Stellar pitching by the Lions pen, which followed Pan with three magnificent innings of one-hit relief got the job done for manager Lu Wen-sheng as the Lions treated the crowd to a narrow victory that brought them to a tie with the Cobras for the lead in the latest standings.
Failure to come up with the clutch hits by the Cobras offense wasted another solid start for Ahearne who lost for the first time in four starts. The Cobras hitters batted a combined 1-for-12 with men in scoring position to lose back-to-back games for the first time since late May.
Whales 4, Bulls 1
Nee Fu-deh earned his first win as a starter as the Chinatrust Whales topped the Sinon Bulls with a 4-1 road victory in Taichung on Wednesday.
The setup man extraordinaire came out of the Whales bullpen in his newfound starting role and pitched 7-1/3 strong innings, allowing a run on six hits while fanning six and walking three for his fourth win of the season.
Wang Hsin-min's RBI single in the top of the fourth broke a scoreless tie as the Whales went up 1-0 against Sinon starter Yang Jien-fu.
Chinatrust doubled its lead in the fifth with another run off Yang, this time via a sacrifice fly by Chen Jien-wei before the Bulls finally scored their first run of the contest in the bottom of the seventh to make it 2-1.
The Whales then put up a pair of insurance runs in the ninth to ice the game in the eventual 4-1 win.
Suffering the loss for the Bulls was Yang, who dropped his seventh straight.