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New England slams the Northwest in Series opener

8/18/2006

SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Billy Hartmann started
off Portsmouth's stay at the Little League World Series in grand
fashion.

Hartmann capped a five-run first inning with a grand slam as the
New Hampshire club posted a 6-1 victory over Beaverton, Oregon
in the opening game of the LLWS.

The New England region champion, Portsmouth received national
attention when it advanced to the finals in the region finals
last Friday despite losing to a team from Vermont because of a
rule violation.

Portsmouth proved early on in this one that it belonged. Jordan
Bean started the rally with a one-out walk and Mathew Feeney
followed with a double, scoring pinch runner John Graham.

Conor Trefethen was hit by a pitch by Devin DeJardin (0-1) and
Connor McCauley singled before Hartmann blew open the Pool B
contest with his home run.

"That was one of the best moments of my life," Hartman said. "I
hit the ball to right because the pitch was outside."

The early support proved more than enough for Bean (1-0), who
struck out 14 in allowing a run and two hits in six innings for
the complete game.

His counterpart, DeJardin, reached Bean for a homer leading off
the second inning. However, the Portsmouth pitcher got even in
the third, striking out DeJardin to get out of a bases-loaded
jam.

"[It was] just jitters and the stage is pretty big," Beaverton
coach Jeff Keller said. "It's the first time in 48 years that
an Oregon team has been here."

Portsmouth will return to action Saturday against Columbia,
Missouri while Beaverton will not play again until Sunday
against Lake Charles, Louisiana.