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Five relievers combined to allow a run over five innings and Nobuhiro Matsuda drove in four runs as the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks won Game 1 of the Pacific League Climax Series’ final stage 8-4 over the Saitama Seibu Lions on Wednesday.

The win evened the stage at MetLife Dome outside Tokyo between the two-time defending PL champion Lions and the Hawks. As league champs, the Lions entered the six-game set with a one-win lead.

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