A new United States champion has been crowned at the Little League World Series.
The all-stars from River Ridge, Louisiana prevailed in Saturday's championship game, defeating the previously undefeated team from Wailuku, Hawaii, 9-5.
The game was a scoreless pitchers’ duel until the fifth inning. That’s when Louisiana broke out to score five runs. Ryder Planchard started the scoring with an RBI single. Marshall Louque followed with a two-run double to break the game open.
Louisiana added four more runs in the sixth. Those runs loomed large as Hawaii rallied to score five runs in their final at-bat. The tying run was at the plate when the game ended.
Wailuku was bidding to make it back-to-back U.S. championships for Hawaii teams. The all-stars from Honolulu won the world championship last year, defeating South Korea in the final.
Hawaii previously defeated Louisiana in an opening-round game, 5-2. Louisiana was forced to battle back through the loser’s bracket and did so by winning five consecutive elimination games.
Curacao wins international championship
The all-stars from Curacao won the International championship earlier on Saturday, defeating Japan 5-4 in one of the most exciting games of the entire tournament.
That sets up a world championship battle against Louisiana.
Japan, which entered the game outscoring its World Series opponents 32-2, rallied for two runs in the sixth inning, but left the tying run 60 feet from home when Curacao’s Keven Rosina ran down a line drive to end the game.
Curacao pulled off the upset behind some clutch hitting and pitching. Shendrion Martinus doubled home two runs in the third inning before Curley Martha added two critical insurance runs with a homer in the fifth.
Martha also contributed on the pitching mound, tossing 3 2/3 innings to close out the victory. He allowed two runs and struck out four.
Curacao will look to win its second world championship on Sunday after first winning the title in 2004.
When is the World Championship Game?
Louisiana and Curacao will meet in the World Championship Game on Sunday afternoon. The game will begin at 3:00 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on ABC.
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