Case homers, strikes out 10 as Phoenix wins
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Shaun Case gave Phoenix the lead three batters into the game. He made it stand for the remainder of the contest.
Case homered in the top of the first inning and dominated on the mound, tossing a one-hitter as Phoenix defated Lemont, Ill., 1-0 in a Pool A contest at the Little League World Series.
After Lemont starter Josh Ferry struck out Max Harden and induced a groundout by Scott Kingery, Chase belted an 0-2 offering over center field fence for a 1-0 lead.
"He left it in my wheelhouse and I just hit it," said Chase, who belted three homers in Phoenix's West Regional Tournament-clinching game against Northern California. "It feels good because you're in the Series and you get the chance to do something special."
It proved to be all Phoenix (1-0) needed as Chase allowed just a two-out single by David Hearne in the first inning. The right-hander walked two and hit a batter in six frames but struck out 10, including six of the last nine hitters he faced.
"Shaun gets the outs when you need them," Phoenix manager Thomas Kingery said. "He's a gamer, but the defense will get the outs, too, if we need it."
"The kid pitched a great ball game," said Lemont manager Mike Hall, whose team did not advance a runner past second base. "He's one of the best pitchers we've seen."
Ferry also went the distance for Lemont (0-1), allowing one run and just two hits in six innings with one walk and 11 strikeouts.
"He's disappointed right now," Hall said of Ferry, who retired 17 of the last 19 batters he faced. "Josh just got [the home-run pitch] over the plate and the rest is history. Only giving up two hits, the game could have easily gone the other way."
Chase Knox recorded Phoenix's other hit, a one-out single in the second.
The start of the game was delayed 63 minutes by rain.