By Arnie Leshin
Leave it to Canada, our border neighbors to the north, when it comes to
the yearly August chase to play in the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pa., they never join in with the other foreign countries, they always travel the same road as the United States.
Which is why with about each foreign country already clinching a berth in this 75th by annual WS, Canada, as the U.S. does, played its first round today. And at South Williamsport, the World Series is scheduled for Aug. 17-28.
An update on the international teams will come this week.
Played at Calgary, Alberto, British Columbia got away to a good start by winning once each over Alberto and RMLL, but both of them bounced back, Alberto got past Quebec, 7-2, and RMLL disposed of Omtario, 5-3. In the other games, British Columbia turned back Alberto, 8-4, and RMLL, 3.
Today, Ontario met up with Atlantic, both at 1-1 and trying to avoid the double elimination.
As did Canada, some of the United States Regions began today.
At the Great Lakes Region played at Whitestown, Ind., Kentucky rolled past Ohio, 12-2, and Michigan bested Illinois, 8-3. Kentucky will face host Indiana today. Wednesday is the final.
At the Northwest Region contested at San Bernardino, Calif., Washington state routed Oregon, 10-1, and Idaho edged Alaska, 3-1. Today, Washington and Idaho matched up with both in the current winner’s bracket, and two 0-1 teams, Oregon and Alaska, try to survive. Thursday is the final.
The Mid-Atlantic at Bristol, Conn., also started today, with Pennsylvania defeating Washington D.C., 7-3, and Delaware topping Maryland, 6-5.
There will be games Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, with the finals scheduled for Friday.
The new Metro Region also in Bristol, Conn., had New York opening today with a 6-3 triumph over New Jersey, and host Connecticut winning over Rhode Island, 3-1.
New Jersey is playing Rhode Island Sunday night, with the loser ousted, and on Monday, It’s a clash of 1-0 New York and Connecticut. There will be a game on Wednesday, with the finals set for Friday.
The Midwest, also at Whitestown, Ind., got underway Friday, with North Dakota triumphing over Minnesota, 5-2, Iowa routing Kansas, 10-3, South Dakota falling to Missouri, 5-4, and Nebraska getting blanked by Wisconsin, 9-0.
Saturday in the Midwest, it was Minnesota getting even at 1-1 by eliminating South Dakota, 5-4, and Kansas doing the same by surviving over Nebraska, 7-0, and ousting Nebraska. Today, Missouri won its second in row by getting past North Dakota, 17-7, and Iowa and Wisconsin, both at 2-0, were going at it Sunday night.
Monday will send Minnesota against the Iowa-Wisconsin winner and the other contest has Kansas and North Dakota getting in on with the loser eliminated. There are games scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday and the finals are Friday.
The Mountain Region at San Bernardino made its first pitch on Saturday and Nevada nipped Montana, 4-3, in 10 innings, while Utah just got past Wyoming, 5-4. There are games Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, and the final is slated for Friday.
The New England Region is also at Bristol, Conn., on Saturday Maine shut down Vermont, 3-0, and Massachusetts did the same to New Hampshire, 1-0. On Sunday, in a loser’s bracket test, New Hampshire ousted Vermont, 3-2.
Maine will play Massachusetts Monday, with both at 1-0, there will be a game Wednesday, and the finals are Friday.
The West Region is also played at San Bernardino, and on Saturday it was Northern California shutting out Arizona, 5-0, Hawaii doing the same to Southern California, 3-0, to set the losers up Sunday and the winners Monday. There will be a contest Wednesday and the finals Friday.
And at Warner Robbins, Ga., is the Southeast Region, and on Thursday, South Carolina slipped past Florida, 2-1, Tennessee romped over Alabama, 11-0, host Georgia routed West Virginia, 12-0, and Viriginia squeaked past North Carolina, 4-3.
In Friday games, Florida hung around but knocked out Alabama, 17-1, North Carolina did the same in surviving by eliminating West Virginia, 6-5, then there was Tennessee getting to 2-0 by handing 1-1 South Carolina a 3-0 zip, and Georgia having a close one in edging Virginia, 2-1, which fell to 1-1.
Saturday, Virginia remained in the running and eliminating Florida, 7-1, and Tennessee and Georgia had a long weather delay into Sunday night. Monday might have that game if it was postponed, and the finals are expected for Tuesday.