A dramatic tying home run in the bottom of the 9th and a walk-off hit in the bottom of the 10th. NC snapped a three-game losing streak with a thrilling victory over Hanwha. NC had the last laugh in a wild game that saw both teams combine for 30 hits and 19 runs.
NC defeated Hanwha 10-9 on Sunday in Changwon thanks to Kim Soo-yoon’s game-winning hit in the bottom of the 10th inning. After leadoff hitter Yoon Hyung-jun walked, Kim Soo-yoon hit a single up the middle between the second baseman and shortstop. Park Young-bin, who had turned heads the day before with his crucial pinch-hitting, came to the plate and drove in the winning run with a wild pitch to end the game. NC was down 7-9 going into the ninth inning, but with one out, captain Son Ah-seob hit a dramatic tying home run to extend the game.
“It feels better than any other home run I’ve hit this season,” he told the media after the game. “The team was on a losing streak, and there were a lot of one-run games in extra innings, so it was a bit difficult for the whole team, but I’m glad we won a tough game.”
After going hitless in the first two games of the three-game series against Hanwha the day before, Son went 3-for-6 with a home run and five RBIs. In the bottom of the seventh inning, down 5-8, Son hit a two-run double directly to the left-center field fence. If the ball had stretched a little more, it could have been a game-tying three-run shot. “I felt it, but I didn’t know if it was my strength or the pitch,” he said, adding, “If the ball didn’t go over in the bottom of the ninth, I almost wondered if I should retire early.”
“It’s been a long time since I’ve been up to bat for a long hit,” Son said of his ninth-inning home run, “and I was hoping for a mistake, but I got three pitches. I felt that the heavens hadn’t abandoned me,” he said.
Before the game, NC coach Kang In-hwa skipped the team’s training session. He didn’t even allow them to train on their own. It was better to rest and conserve physical strength. Son said, “It definitely helped. I think I’m good at managing my physical fitness, but I’ve been struggling a lot since last week,” he said, adding, “I felt light today.”
“I’m unbelievably happy, and it’s good to break the team’s losing streak,” said Kim Soo-yoon, who had the game-winning hit. With the bases loaded, Kim’s first 안전놀이터 sign was a bunt. However, Coach Lee Jong-wook advised him to take a bold swing if the opponent was playing forward defense, and he swung without hesitation, becoming the hero of the long game. “It was a victory made possible by the determination of both the fans and the players who supported us until the end,” said Coach Kang Shin-ho. “I would like to thank both the fans and the players for their hard work until the end. We will continue to build on the good mood from today’s victory and show a good performance in the weekend games.”