Sanfrecce Hiroshima handed visiting J. League top-flight leaders Vissel Kobe a 2-0 loss Saturday following first-half goals from Takaaki Shichi and Mutsuki Kato.

The result at Edion Stadium Hiroshima leaves Kobe with just a one-point buffer over second-place Yokohama F. Marinos following their 1-1 draw with Sagan Tosu on Friday.

Despite nearly 60% of possession, Kobe created few chances and managed just one shot on target against a Hiroshima side prepared to hit quickly on the counter.