WILLIAMSPORT, Pennsylvania – The International Championship Game is set and we will have a rematch of one of the better games in the tournament so far.
Mexico defeated Panama (Latin America) 4-2 in seven innings on Thursday to set up a rematch against Japan in the International Championship Game.
Jorge Romero had a huge game for Mexico. He pitched three innings in relief to earn the win giving up just four hits. He also had the biggest hit of the game. In the top of the seventh with one out, Romero hit a two-run home run to give Mexico a 4-2 lead.
Mexico’s bats were quiet until the fifth inning. Down 1-0, Brandon Montes (2-for-3) homered to tie the game at one. As the inning continued, Alexander Artalejo singled in the go ahead run.
Panama wouldn’t stay down for long. In the bottom of the fifth inning they tied the game. Jean Mar Sanchez (2-for-2) led off the inning with a single. He was quickly sacrificed to second base. Juan Crisp (2-for-2) singled putting runners at the corners with one out when Jordan Agrazal came through. On a 2-1 count, Agrazal hit a sacrifice fly to drive in Sanchez with the tying run.
And that is where the score would stay until the big Romero home run.
Panama fell short once again. In 2012, it made it to the International Championship Game after knocking out Mexico. However, this year Mexico got its revenge and will face off with Japan once again.
Japan defeated Mexico in their first match up 5-2 after getting three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to break a 2-2 tie. The two will play for a chance at the Little League World Series Championship Game on Saturday.
On the United States side, the Northwest and New England will play on Friday for a chance at the US Championship Game. New England won the first match between these two teams 9-7 after holding off a late rally from the Northwest. New England led the game 9-1 but Northwest would come back late to make it a close game.
The winner will play the West in the US Championship Game on Saturday afternoon.
2013 Little League World Series Schedule:
Friday August 23
3:00 pm Northwest vs New England
Saturday August 24
10:30 am Challenger Game
12:30 pm International Championship – Japan vs Mexico
3:00 pm United States Championship – West vs Northwest/New England
Sunday August 25
11:00 am Third Place Game
3:00 pm World Series Championship
Eric Bynum is Managing Editor here at BaseballdeWorld. He spent three years as an ESL teacher in South Korea, and is now working on his master's degree in history with a focus on baseball and WWII. He has played and/or written about baseball for the past 30 years and is an avid Atlanta Braves fan.