UNITED STATES – Bulla Graft delivered the go-ahead run in the fourth inning with a clutch single and Kiko Garcia pitched three-plus scoreless relief innings Sunday to lead Chula Vista (California) to a 6-3 triumph over Taoyuan (Taiwan) to capture the 2009 Little League World Series championship.
California, which claimed the LLWS title for the sixth time, extended the United States winning streak to five years (2005-09).
Taiwan bolted ahead 3-0 in the third on back-to-back home runs by Wen Hua Sung and Chin Ou. But the Americans got on the board in the bottom of the same inning, and took the lead for good an inning later.
Seth Godfrey’s RBI sacrifice fly made it a one-run game drove before Nick Conlin raced home on a wild pitch to knot the score. Taiwan’s decision to intentionally walk Andy Rios backfired when Graft drilled a run-scoring single to right field to give California a 4-3 lead.
The Taiwanese squad loaded the bases in the fifth off Garcia, but was left empty-handed when Ou grounded into an inning-ending double play. California finished off the title-clinching victory with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning.
Taiwan, which entered the game 7-0 all-time against California in the LLWS championship game, lost in the title game for just the third time in 20 tries.
MEXICO 5 – TEXAS 4
Raymundo Berrones smacked a go-ahead two-run homer and Reynosa (Mexico) beat San Antonio (Texas) 5-4 Sunday in the Little League World Series consolation game.
Luis Perez reached on a single to start the sixth before Berrones hit a frozen rope that barely cleared the centerfield fence at Volunteer Stadium to overcome a 4-3 deficit.
Steven Cardone’s RBI double in the second gave Texas a 1-0 lead. However, Mexico rallied for three runs in the third on Raul Rojas’ RBI single and a two-run triple off the bat of Perez.
Texas pulled even in the same inning, then grabbed the lead an inning later on an RBI single by Nicholas Smisek.
Reliever Jorge Maldonado fanned four over the final two frames to earn the win.
Photo courtesy of Road to Williamsport