SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Cody Thomson pitched a one-hitter and had an RBI single to lead Conejo Valley of Thousand Oaks, Calif., to a 4-0 victory over Lamar National of Richmond, Texas, in the U.S. championship game of the Little League World Series on Saturday night.
California (5-0) advances to Sunday night's series championship
against Pabao Little League of Willemstad, Curacao. Curacao (5-0)
beat Linda Vista Little League of Guadalupe, Mexico, 4-0 in
Saturday's international championship.
With a 72 mph fastball and a deceptive curveball, Thomson shut
down a Texas team that came in batting .440, with six players at
.500 or better, and had scored a series-best 51 runs in four games.
Thomson struck out 12 on the way to his second win in the series.
Texas (4-1) almost scored in the second inning, twice getting
runners to second base before Dustin Moehlig hit into a double play
to end the inning. Texas had a runner at second again in the
fourth, but Thomson struck out three of the next four batters.
Thomson's RBI single in the second, a chopper up the middle,
scored the game's first run. He then scored on Hayden Cronenbold's
RBI single to center field for a 2-0 lead.
Danny Leon singled to lead off the third and later scored on
Jordan Brower's sacrifice fly to make it 3-0. John Lister scored on
an infield error in the sixth for the game's final run.
Curacao 4, Mexico 0
Dimitri Eugenia's first hit at the Little League World Series -- a solo home run -- was enough to send Curacao to the championship game.
Curacao, which has played for the international title the last
four years, advanced to the championship game for the first time.
Eugenia struck out in each of his five previous at-bats. But
with two outs in the second, he sent the first pitch over the wall
in right-center to give Curacao a 1-0 lead.
"After five strikeouts, the pitcher will not throw that hard,"
Eugenia said through an interpreter. "He just threw it over the
middle, thinking he was going to strike me out again. I just hit
Mexico (3-2) threatened in the fourth, loading the bases when
Jurickson Profar walked two and the infield failed to make the play
on a fielder's choice, but Profar struck out Felipe Martinez to
retire the side and end the threat. Mexico had two on with one out
in the fifth, but Profar struck out one and the last batter hit
into a fielder's choice.
"The manager asked if I could strike out the batter, and I did
it," Profar said.
Profar (2-0) struck out 12; Ismael Garcia (0-1) took the loss.
Carlos Pineda hit a two-run homer in the fourth -- his third home
run of the series -- to make it 3-0. Jonathan Schoop's RBI double in
the fifth made it 4-0.