Sun, Nov 09, 2014 - Page 20 News List

Taiwan score 16 in Czech Republic win

OTHER GAMES:Also picking up victories yesterday were New Zealand, who had a 9-5 win against Mexico, and Australia, who easily beat the Netherlands 10-1

By Paul Huang  /  Contributing reporter

Taiwan’s Tsao Yu-ning watches the ball after a hit against the Czech Republic during their game at the Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium yesterday.

Photo: Liao Yao-huei, Taipei Times

Taiwan remained unbeaten after two games in Group A at the IBAF Under-21 Baseball World Cup with a 16-1 trouncing of the Czech Republic at the Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium yesterday afternoon.

Taiwan continued to excel at the plate following Friday night’s 21-hit effort with 16 runs yesterday to cruise past the European visitors. Even though their hit total of nine was down compared with Friday night, they demonstrated tremendous patience by drawing 13 walks from four different Czech pitchers to more than make up the difference.

“We swung at some bad pitches early on and missed a chance to take a big lead early, but we were able to shake it off later in the game to get the runners on base and score the runs, which was huge for us,” Taiwan skipper Kuo Lee Chien-fu said after the game.

His troops only mustered a 5-1 lead through the sixth before erupting for 11 runs over the final two innings of play to blow the game wide open.

The Czech defense contributed to the Taiwan victory, committing six errors that led to five unearned runs.

Taiwan wasted little time getting to Czech starter Marek Cervenka with a pair of runs in the opening frame when Tsao Yu-ning led off the game with a single and scored two outs later on Chen Ping-chieh’s two-run single for a quick 2-0 lead.

Even though starter Chen Ming-hsuan gave one of the runs back in the bottom of the first, surrendering three walks and two singles, the hosts were able to keep the lead with the help of some poor base running by Czech Republic and an inning-ending fly out that left three stranded.

That was the momentum-shifter that Chen Ming-hsuan needed as he went on to two-hit the visitors through the seventh with six shutout innings to pick up the win in a respectable manner.

“I was very nervous at the start of the game, which is why my pitches were all over the place, but I was able to fix that quickly and move on with the game,” Chen Ming-hsuan said.

Leading the way at the plate for the victors for the second straight game was Tsao, who drove in five runs on another three-hit game, showing that his selection to the national squad was no fluke.

Also starring for Taiwan were Chen Ping-chieh and Lee Tsong-hsien, who collected two hits apiece that delivered three runs to complement Tsao’s exceptional day.

In other results yesterday, New Zealand defeated Mexico 9-5, Australia beat the Netherlands 10-1 and Japan beat Venezuela 11-1.

Next up for Taiwan is South Korea, who pose a serious threat to the home squad in their quest to finish first in Group A. South Korea had a pair of impressive wins on the first two days of action.

The first pitch is scheduled for 6:30pm today at the Intercontinental Stadium.

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