NISHINOMIYA, HYOGO PREF. - A week after setting a National Summer High School Championship record with 22 strikeouts, Toko Gakuen High School lefty Yuki Matsui struck out 19 batters at Koshien Stadium on Thursday afternoon in a 7-5, second-round win over Joso Gakuin.
Prior to Matsui, only five pitchers had struck out 19 batters in a game at the summer championships, the last time in 2005. In 1963, PL Gakuen High School’s Yoshinori Toda struck out 21 batters in the spring invitational tournament at Koshien.
Against a Joso Gakuin team that had scored 14 runs in its first-round victory, Matsui faced 35 batters and allowed six hits and three walks.
“I don’t consciously go for strikeouts, except when I’m in a jam,” said Matsui, who tired in the late innings in front of a full house of 47,000.