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Taiwan wins ticket to bronze medal game in under 18 baseball tourney

2012/09/07 22:28:45

Seoul, Sept. 7 (CNA) Taiwan defeated Colombia 3-1 in its final second round game at the 18 and under Baseball World Championship in Seoul Friday, but it will not have the chance to defend its title won in 2010.

The victory gave Taiwan a 3-2 record, tied with Canada and the United States at the top of the tightly bunched six-team group to determine the medal game matchups, but it finished in third place because of tiebreakers.

Canada and the U.S. took the top two spots and will play in the gold medal game because they had a better run differential in games between the top three teams.

Taiwan's manager Lan Wen-sheng praised starting pitcher Sen Jung-hung for his outstanding outing against Colombia, in which he gave up a run on only three hits and struck out five over eight innings.

Lan said it was unfortunate, however, that Taiwan lost to the U.S. 5-1 a day earlier, meaning it would lose the run differential tiebreaker with Canada and the U.S.

Taiwan beat Canada 6-5 and Canada beat the U.S 1-0 in earlier games.

Colombia's 2-3 record tied it with Japan and South Korea for fourth, but because it defeated the two Asian teams earlier in the tournament, it was given fourth place and a chance to play for bronze.

In Friday's game, Colombia opened the scoring in the top of the first when Yair Morelos singled, was sacrificed to second and scored on a hit by Christian Cano.

Taiwan replied with two runs in the bottom of the first after its first three batters singled to load the bases. Leadoff man Lin Tzu-wei scored on a wild pitch and Sen Yu-pin came home on a fielders' choice.

Lin, who signed with the Boston Red Sox for US$2.05 million at the end of June, added to Taiwan's lead in the second with a two-out RBI double.

He was the star in 2010 when Taiwan won the 18U Baseball World Championship in Thunder Bay, Canada, being named Most Valuable Player of the tournament.

(By Chiang Yuan-chen and Elizabeth Hsu)