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Updated: November 4, 2018
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(Story by Marco Stoovelaar)

Wyverns wins opening-game Korean Series

SONGPA-GU, SEOUL (South Korea) - SK Wyverns opened the best-of-seven Korean Series on Sunday (November 4) with a 7-3 victory against Doosan Bears. Game 2 will played on Monday.

In the regular season, which ended on October 14, Doosan Bears finished in first place with a 93-51 record and automatically advanced to the Korean Series. However, the team had to wait three weeks to play its first game in the Series, as three Play-Off Rounds were played to decided the second finalist.

In these Play-Offs, it was fourth placed Nexen Heroes that won twice to advance to the Play-Off Final. In the first Play-Off, a best-of-one on October 16, the team won 10-6 against reigning champion Kia Tigers, which had finished in fifth place. With that, the defending champion was eliminated.

In the next round, which started on October 19, Nexen Heroes won 3-1 in a best-of-five against third placed Hanwha Eagles. On October 27, the Heroes started their final Play-Off Round, a best-of-five against SK Wyverns, which closed the season in second place with a 78-65 record. Wyverns won the first two games (10-8, 5-1), then the Heroes won the next two games (3-2, 4-2) to force a fifth and deciding game. Last Friday, Wyverns led 9-4 when the ninth inning began, but Heroes then scored five runs to come alongside. In the tenth inning, the Heroes took a 10-9 lead. In the bottom of the tenth, Kang-Min Kim led off with a homerun to tie the score, then Dong-Min Han followed with a walk-off homerun. Wyverns won 11-10 to become the second finalist and play in the Korean Series for the first time in six years.

American Trey Hillman is the Manager of the Wyverrns and became the first foreign Manager to reach the Korean Series.

The opening game was played at the historic Jamsil Baseball Stadium in the South Korean capital. The stadium was built between April 1980 and July 1982 to open in time for the World Baseball Championship later in 1982. The stadium also was the site for the baseball-tournament during the 1988 Olympic Games. Jamsil Stadium is the home of professional teams LG Twins and Doosan Bears. In the opener, the visiting Wyverns took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning, but trailed 3-2 after five innings. From the sixth inning on, Wyverns turned the game its way by scoring five runs in the final four at bats to win 7-3.

American Josh Lindblom started for Doosan and Jong-Hoon Park was the starting pitcher for Wyverns.

In the top of the first inning, Wyverns got on the board first when Dong-Min Han hit a 2-run homerun. In the regular season, the Wyverns led the league with 233 homeruns.

Doosan got one run back in the third inning, then took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the fifth when Joo-Hwan Choi delivered another runscoring single. Choi batted in all three runs for the home-team.

In the sixth inning, Wyverns re-took the lead when Jung-Kwon Park hit a 2-run homerun.

(November 4)

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