They have one more innings to tie things up or the game with Ryoyukan and their dream of Nationals are over. Can they really expect to topple the favourites with a team made up of mostly first-years?
It came down to the final innings and Ryoyukan had a lead of one. If nothing else, that should have been a big enough surprise from an unknown team and first-year pitcher. However, things were just about to get interesting. After some flustered pitching, Shin Koshigaya had two runners on base. That was enough for the Ryoyukan couch to pull their starting pitcher and replace her with Shugetsu You and she has a powerful arm. She took the first out of the innings and left Yoshino panicking over her decisions. Nozomi spotted Yoshino stepping out and went to comfort her, reminding her to make sure she was back on the bench in time for her to bat. She made it and so did Nozomi. You pitched a fastball to the inside and Nozomi made contact, sending it flying over the fence.
That gave them a two-run lead, which was achievable if Ryoyukan can get You up to bat and they only needed to get one runner on base to do it. Yomi took down the first two batters, but the third managed to squeeze onto first. It was time for the rematch – Yomi versus You! After a couple of strikes and foul balls, Tamaki gave the call to unleash Yomi’s super-fastball. You seemed to be pleased to see it, but hadn’t counted on the extra zip. Regardless, she made contact and sent the ball soaring into the air. Only this time, it came down, landing in Nozomi’s mitt. They won!
What did you think?
This series has been fairly average. It took it’s time to get going and focused on the team having fun and doing trivial things, but these last couple of episodes have stepped things up considerably. One of the comments I made earlier in the series was that it might have worked better if the game had started in episodes one and we’d seen flashbacks through the match, piecing together the team and the way it came to be. We saw a bit of that in this episode and it was a far improved affair. I ended up really enjoying this episode and as the last episode of the season, it’s going to see me bumping my overall rating up. The animation was still a mess, but I’ll overlook it this one time.
What have you learnt?
I love predicting how a story is going to go, but also a good surprise. The way this series was shaping up, I was fully expecting them to lose to Ryoyukan and have it put the spin on playing for fun and improving over time. Then, when Nozomi hit that home-run, I started to believe that they could actually do it and it felt good. There was still that nagging feeling at the back of my mind that something would go wrong. And then, You stepped up to the plate. It looked like Yomi was going to get her revenge and I was expecting the strikeout, but You made contact and my heart sank. Were they really going to lose after I’d got my hopes up? No, thankfully. Sure, this is the usual predictable stuff from sports anime, but it was a real rollercoaster of a ride. I ended up enjoying this far more than I thought I would after the first couple of episodes.
Other reviews in the series
- Season One
- Episode 1 – A Fated Reunion
- Episode 2 – Let’s Play Ball Together
- Episode 3 – Take Me With You
- Episode 4 – Pitch of Promise
- Episode 5 – Losing Streak
- Episode 6 – With Hearts Full of Hope
- Episode 7 – Night Sky After Rain
- Episode 8 – From Zero
- Episode 9 – Change the Tide
- Episode 10 – Show ‘Em What We’ve Got
- Episode 11 – This is Nationals Level
- Episode 12 – Pitch Without Regret