Citywide News

Posted on: October 24, 2016

Final Four set for Junior League World Series

The winner-takes-all matchups are set for the USA and International championship games in the 36th annual Junior League Baseball World Series at Taylor’s Heritage Park.
The Shing-Ming Junior Little League all-stars from Taoyuan City put Chinese Taipei in the International championship game for the fourth straight year. The 3-0 Asia-Pacific champions will play the Mexico national champions from Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon (3-1) at 3 p.m. Saturday.
The USA championship game at 6 p.m. Saturday pits the USA West champion Kawaihau Little League from Kapaa, Hawaii (2-0) against the USA Southwest champ Padre Little League from Corpus Christi, Texas (2-1).
The International and USA champions will then meet for the world championship game at 1 p.m. Sunday. The game will be broadcast live by ESPN.
Heritage Park is located at 12111 Pardee Road. Admission to the games is just $5 per carload per day, which includes parking. Those who cannot attend in person can watch Saturday’s games on streaming video at www.ustream.tv/channel/jlws.
The Junior League World Series is the “older brother” of the more famous Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The Little League series is for 12-year-olds. The Junior League series is for 13- and 14-year-olds.
The Junior League World Series was founded in Taylor by Greg Bzura and a group of Little League volunteers in 1981 at the Taylor South Little League – and has remained in Taylor ever since. Bzura remains tournament director, working with hundreds of volunteers.
The JLWS started with four USA teams and has grown to 11 teams from around the world. The 2016 World Series had the biggest field of teams in the history of the event. The national champion of Australia was granted an automatic berth for the first time.
There was a major change this year in the “modified double-elimination” format that was mandated by Little League International. Once a team lost two games in the tournament, it was out of contention for the world championship and plays crossover consolation games between USA and International teams the rest of the week.
Once four teams are left, two teams play one game to determine the International and USA champions on Saturday, followed by the world championship game on Sunday.
Two teams – Latin America champion Juan Diaz, Panama, and USA Southeast champion Taylors, South Carolina – were eliminated in a day of four games on Thursday.
Previously eliminated during the week were the USA Central regional champions from Midland, Michigan; USA East regional champions from Salisbury, Maryland; the Europe/Africa champions from Brno, Czech Republic, the Australian national champions from Sydney, New South Wales, and the Canadian national champions from Lethbridge, Alberta.
The first three games on Thursday were moved to the hosting Taylor South Little League senior field at Heritage Park due to heavy rains that made the junior field unplayable on Wednesday. That caused the two Wednesday night games to be rescheduled to Thursday.
All of the game results and the complete schedule can be found on the World Series website at www.cityoftaylor.com/worldseries. World Series highlights and photos can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/juniorleagueworldseries.
THURSDAY’S RESULTS
Taoyuan, Chinese Taipei (Asia-Pacific) 11, Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon (Mexico) 0: Six runs in the fourth inning – four coming on a grand slam by Lee Chen Hsun – led to a runaway 11-0 win by Chinese Taipei over Mexico in a battle of undefeated teams Thursday morning. The game put the Asia-Pacific champions back in the International championship game of the Junior League Baseball World Series for the fourth straight year. Mexico would defeat Panama later in the day to secure a rematch with Chinese Taipei at 3 p.m. Saturday at Taylor’s Heritage Park. Leading 8-0 after Hsun’s blast, Asia-Pacific added three runs in the top of the fifth inning. Three Mexico outs later, the game came to a halt on the 10-run mercy rule. Lee went 3-for-4 and had five RBI. Teammate Chao Wei Huang was 3-for-3, scored two runs and knocked in a pair. Kai En Wu scored twice. Tzu En Lin had a two-run double. Lee and Lin combined on a two-hit shutout over the five innings. The win left Chinese Taipei 3-0 heading into Saturday’s rematch. The loss was Mexico’s first in the series.
Kapaa, Hawaii (USA West) 12, Taylors, South Carolina (USA Southeast) 7: Hawaii scored five runs in the eighth inning to defeat South Carolina, 12-7, and advance to the USA championship game of the Junior League Baseball World Series. Hawaii will play Texas in the national title game at 6 p.m. Friday. The USA Southeast champions had a 5-3 lead when Hawaii scored four runs in the sixth inning to take a two-run lead, 7-5. South Carolina scored twice in the bottom of the sixth and the game remained tied at 7-7 at the end of seven innings, so it went into extra innings. Kaimi Malina singled home Trevor Kaui to put Hawaii up for good. The USA West champions added four more runs on a bases-loaded walk to Ricky Rego, an RBI single by Jacob Borrero and a two-run single by Cole Frye. A double play ended the game. Malina went 2-for-3, scored three runs and knocked in a pair. Kaui went 3-for-4, scored three runs and also knocked in two. The top of the lineup was solid for South Carolina as Myles Daniels, Hayden Stapleton and Caden Grice had two hits apiece and combined to score six of the team’s seven runs. Grice had a three-run homer in the fourth, scoring Daniels and Stapleton, and had four RBI in the game. The loss was the first of two South Carolina would suffer on Thursday.
Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon (Mexico) 4, Juan Diaz, Panama (Latin America) 3: In perhaps the most thrilling game of the World Series, Mexico scored three times in the bottom of the seventh inning to erase a 3-1 Panama lead and win the game – and a spot in the International championship game against Chinese Taipei at 3 p.m. Saturday. Panama scored three times on RBI doubles by Derek Arroyo, Geremias Valenci and Alan Meza. Mexico scored a run on an RBI double by Juan Garza in the bottom of the inning and the score remained 3-1 until the fateful seventh. A bases-loaded single by Garza scored Ray Martinez and Luis Rodriguez to tie the game. Daniel Quiroz hit a potential game-ending double play ball, but he was safe at first on a throwing error and Aldair Tellez scored from third on the play for the winning run. As Team Mexico celebrated, Panama players were devastated. The one-run loss was the second for 2-2 Panama – and both came at the hands of Mexico. Garza had two of Mexico’s four hits in the game, along with three RBI. Hernan Verdugo, who came in to pitch after just one out in the game, threw shutout ball for Mexico the rest of the way, allowing four hits and a walk and striking out six.
Corpus Christi, Texas (USA Southwest) 5, Taylors, South Carolina (USA Southeast) 2: Team Texas scored four runs in the second inning and went on to defeat Team South Carolina, 5-2. The “must win” qualified Texas (2-1) for the USA championship game against Hawaii (2-0) at 6 p.m. Saturday. Third baseman Alex Pena’s home run started Corpus Christi’s big fourth inning. He went 2-for-2 on the night. An RBI single by J.T. Zepeda and a sacrifice fly by J.R. Guervara also scored runs. Pitchers Guervara, Zepeda, R.J. Arredondo and Bobby Lupon combined on a five hitter, striking out five along the way. Myles Daniels homered in the third inning for South Carolina and went 2-for-4. Pitcher Brody Fahr allowed just one unearned run and two hits in five innings of relief. The loss was the second of the day for South Carolina, which fell to 2-2. The USA Southeast champ’s next outing will be in a crossover consolation game against an International team.
NOTEBOOK
Three crossover consolation games between USA and International teams are scheduled for Friday: Czech Republic vs. Maryland at 10 a.m. Australia vs. Michigan at 12:30 p.m. Canada vs. Michigan at 3 p.m.
World Series officials said Michigan will play twice because there is one more team in the International bracket (six) than there is in the USA bracket (five).
More crossover games will be announced.

Additional Info...
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