Koshien is Japan’s most prestigious amateur baseball tournament. It’s basically the equivalent of the US NCAA’s March Madness, but for High School Baseball instead of College Basketball. However, one school seems to have gotten a ton of attention, as its students used one of the most recognisable Anime OP songs ever, Kemono Friends’ “Welcome to Japari Park”.
That school is the Uwajima Higashi High School, one of the many High Schools who have fought hard to qualify for Koshien. The clip immediately trended in Japanese twitter, given the popularity of both the tournament and the anime.
But why “Welcome to Japari Park”, you ask? Well, as it turns out, the guy who wrote the song, Masayoshi Oishi, is an alumnus from the school. He grew up in Ehime Prefecture where the school is located, and actually attended that very school. Nothing like telling Japan that you produced one of Japan’s premiere anime song writers during Koshien, right?
As for Oishi, he was surprised that his Alma Mater even played his song. He admitted he was overjoyed when he saw the video, though he admitted that he played soccer/football for the school instead of baseball.
Unfortunately, Uwajima Higashi High School lost to Ube Rikijo High School 7-3. Though the school playing the song in honor of an alumni certainly is tanoshii.
source: Masayoshi Oishi’s Twitter Page