Hawks blank Perth at Asia Series


Seiichi Uchikawa drove in three runs and Sho Iwasaki combined with three relievers in a shutout as the Japan Series champion Fukuoka Softbank Hawks defeated the Perth Heat of Australia 4-0 to win their third game in a row at the Asia Series on Sunday.

Softbank, which finished the round-robin stage with a 3-0 record, will play Tuesday’s final against the Samsung Lions of South Korea or Taiwan’s Uni-President Lions.

Pacific League batting champion Uchikawa opened the scoring with an RBI double in the first inning and added a two-run single in the fifth at Taoyuan International Stadium.

The Hawks’ pitchers handcuffed the opposition on three-hit ball in their second consecutive shutout following Saturday’s 9-0 rout of Samsung.

Reliever Shingo Tatsumi allowed one hit over four scoreless frames.