• Kyodo


Ryosuke Hirata homered three times to match a 21-year-old record and helped lift Osaka Toin to a 6-4 victory over Tohoku in the quarterfinals of the national high school baseball championships on Thursday.

Cleanup man Hirata homered to left in back-to-back at-bats in the second and fourth innings and gave the Osaka school a 5-4 lead with a two-run run blast with one out in the seventh to back fastballer Takanobu Tsujiuchi at Koshien Stadium.

His three homers tied him with former PL Gakuen student Kazuhiro Kiyohara, who achieved the feat with the Osaka school at the 1984 tournament to record the most home runs hit by a single player in one game at the annual summer tournament.

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