McAllister Park National Little League Claims 1st U.S. World Series Berth
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. – McAllister Park National Little League from San Antonio, Texas, was strong in all phases in earning the first U.S. berth in the Little League Baseball World Series winning all five of its games in the Southwestern Region Tournament held at the George W. Bush Little League Leadership Training Center in Waco, Texas. The Texas West champion defeated the Texas East champion, Lufkin (Texas) Little League, in the championship game, 9-0, its fourth victory by shutout.
McAllister Park National Little League, the winner of Pool B with a 3-0 record, came into the championship game hitting .431 as a team, with nine players hitting over .300, and a team ERA of 0.60 while only committing one error in its first four games.
The championship game proved to be more of the same as McAllister Park National Little League scored four runs in the second inning to break on top. Catcher Jordan Cardenas had the key hit in the inning, a three-run home run with two outs. Cardenas came back the following inning to stroke an RBI double in another four-run inning that gave McAllister Park National Little League an 8-0 lead. Cardenas finished the game with two hits and four RBI.
Right-hander Tyler Vitt took it from there striking out eight in the first four innings on his way to the two-hit shutout and his third win in the regional. Vitt, who finished with 10 strikeouts in the championship game, did not allow a run in 12.1 innings of work in the regional.
Lufkin Little League, which upset the No. 1-seed in Pool A, South Lake Charles (La.) Little League, 6-0 in the semifinals, was looking for its first berth in the World Series. McAllister Park National Little League beat Petroglyph Little League from Albuquerque, N.M., 4-0 to earn its way into the championship game.
McAllister Park American Little League won the Southwestern Region title in 2009 to earn a berth in the World Series. McAllister Park National Little League is the 19th team from Texas to earn a spot in in the World Series with two of those teams claiming the championship, and five times the World Series runner-up has been from Texas.
McAllister Park National Little League joins Aguadulce Cabezera Little League from Aguadulce, Panama, the Latin America Region Champion; Kitasuna Little League from Tokyo, Japan, the Japan Region Tournament Champion; Asia-Pacific Region Champion, Kuei-Shan Little League from Taoyuan County, Chinese Taipei; Pariba Little League from Willemstad, Curacao, the Caribbean Region Champion; Middle East & Africa Champion, Lugazi Little League from Lugazi, Uganda; Mexico Region Champion, Oriente Little League from Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico; and KMC American Little League from Ramstein Air Base, Germany, the Europe Champion, in the 16-team Little League Baseball World Series field.
The new Southwestern Region champions will play its first game in the World Series, Aug. 17, against the Mid-Atlantic Region Champions.
The remaining U.S. regional finals will be televised as follows (all times eastern U.S. time): Southeast Region (Aug. 10, 7 p.m., Warner Robins, Ga., ESPN); Great Lakes Region (Aug. 10, 1 p.m., Indianapolis, Ind., ESPN); New England Region (Aug. 11, 6 p.m., Bristol, Conn., ESPN); Northwest Region (Aug. 11, 4 p.m., San Bernardino, Calif., ESPN); Midwest Region (Aug. 11, 2 p.m., Indianapolis, Ind., ESPN); West Region (Aug. 11, 8 p.m., San Bernardino, Calif., ESPN); and Mid-Atlantic Region (Aug. 12, 5 p.m., Bristol, Conn., ESPN2).
The next berths in the Little League Baseball World Series are expected to be decided tomorrow when the Great Lakes and Southeast Region champions will be determined.
The 66th Little League Baseball World Series, for 11-12-year-olds, will be played in South Williamsport, Pa., Aug. 16-26. Sixteen teams from around the world will vie for the coveted title of World Champion.
Photo by Kin Man Hui/San Antonio Express-News