The 26th round of the MEIJI YASUDA J2 League ended with a bang on Sunday as Nagoya Grampus and Ehime FC combined to score 11 goals in a 7-4 epic.
After falling behind 4-0 in the first 48 minutes, Ehime fought back to even the score up at 4-4 with 18 minutes to play before Ryota Aoki scored a brace and Taishi Taguchi completed his hat-trick to make Grampus the 7-4 victors.
The match also featured goals by former J.League MVP Hisato Sato and Swedish striker Robin Simovic for the hosts, who moved up to fifth place on 43 points.
On Saturday, leaders Shonan Bellmare topped Matsumoto Yamaga 2-1, while Avispa Fukuoka squeaked past Machida Zelvia on Wellington’s effort in the 57th minute.
The two sides are nine and eight points ahead of the pack in the quest for automatic promotion to the J1 League.
Yokohama FC stumbled in a 2-1 home loss to Oita Trinita, ending the round in sixth place on 41 points. Trinita as well as Fagiano Okayama, who drew at Kyoto Sanga, trail Yokohama on goal difference.
V-Varen Nagasaki’s 2-1 win against FC Gifu was enough to leapfrog Tokushima Vortis, who fell 1-0 to JEF United Chiba at home after Argentine Larrivey scored his 10th goal of the campaign.
Kamatamare Sanuki took a step to escaping the drop zone with a 2-0 win against Mito Hollyhock, rising three points above last-place Thespa Kusatsu Gunma who fell 1-0 to Montedio Yamagata.