standings fri u-23

MONTERREY, Mexico – World No. 15 Panama defeated the world No. 1 and previously unbeaten Japan, while No. 8 Mexico came out on top over No. 18 Nicaragua as the Super Round continued Friday night at the WBSC U-23 Baseball World Cup.

Panama 3, Japan 2

A lead off walk, followed by an error in the bottom of the 8th came back to haunt Japan (3-1) as Carlos Alfredo Mosquera Ayala scored the go ahead run on a fielder’s choice as Panama (3-1) went on to a 3-2 victory.

Reliever Alberto Jesus Guerrero Fothy shut Japan down in the 9th to earn the win as he backed up Panama starter Abdiel Joel Velasquez King who tossed seven and a third strong innings.

Japan starter Tomohiro Anraku took the loss after eight innings of work that saw him allow three runs, all earned.

Japan opened the scoring with two runs in the 2nd including a Koki Yamashita solo home run. Jean Carlo Rodriguez Diaz homered in the 3rd for Panama before collecting an RBI single in the 5th to tie the game.

Mexico 7, Nicaragua 4

Manuel Alejandro Cruz Casique hit a grand slam with two out in the top of the 7th to lead Mexico (2-2) to a 7-4 win over Nicaragua (1-3).

Norberto Obeso hit a two run homer in the 3rd and drove in a run in the 4th, while Misael Verduzco tossed three scoreless innings in relief to pick up the win.

Nicaragua reliever Jaysson Antonio Aburto Canales was tagged for four earned runs and took the loss.

Javier Eliezer Robles Vivas was 3-for-5 with a double and RBI for Nicaragua.

Final Day of Super Round

Australia will meet Panama (12:00pm), while Mexico will face Japan (6:00pm) Saturday in pivotal contests that will decide Sunday’s gold medal match-up For the Title of World Champion.