While we've seen the Portables play against the Varsity side before, they've been working hard at being a team through a lot of games that their coach has gotten them on the side. With the stakes being either Maeno or Daimon losing his job, and a Maeno loss meaning the end of the Portables and their club, there's a whole lot at stake here. Daimon's hampered a little bit with Azuma taking the game off because of a false injury, largely because he doesn't want the team to be dependent on just one player, Daimon and the principal are still fully confident. To their surprise though, the school chairman has sauntered into the dugout with them and is fully aware of what's going on and has apparently formalized the bet, something that neither Daimon nor the principal ever expected to happen.
Watching the game play out, you realize exactly what it is that's happened in those past six scrimmage games that they lost. While you could suspect that there was some element of training to it, largely owed to Maeno's relationship with those coaches over the years, the losses and general attitude of everyone seemed counter to that being the case. As the game plays out, with two of their key players not playing for the Varsity side, the Portables have kept them tied up at nothing nothing, but there's something odd about their play and how they're progressing. A lot of it is difficult for Ko as he has to learn to balance out his pitches instead of doing constant strikeouts which wears him down over time. When they get close to the seventh inning though and it's only then that his no-hit no-run streak ends do you realize just how intense the game has been played on both sides.
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