Diamondback defeats Angels to win Major's championship
In the second playoff game, the Diamondbacks defeated the Reds, the top-seeded team in the playoffs. Nathan Billings hit an inside-the-park home run, scoring Tyler Blickenstaff, Justin Hance and Travis Fuller, giving the Diamondbacks a 4-3 victory.
Blickenstaff turned in a terrific performance on the mound for the Diamondbacks, going all six innings and striking out nine batters.
The championship game had the Diamondbacks square off against the third-seeded Angels who upset the Cubs, the second- seeded team to reach the finals.
The Diamondbacks scored a run in the first inning with two hits from Skyler Ingwerson and Frankie Shepherd. The Angels responded in the bottom of the first with hits by Josh Edwards and doubles by Daniel Perry and Dayne Metz, giving the Angels a 2-1 lead.
Going into the third, the Diamondbacks scored two runs on hits by Shepherd and Blickenstaff. Franklin hit a double to score both runners, giving the Diamondbacks the lead back at 3-2. Brian Bales, who struck out eight batters in the first three innings, held the Angels scoreless in the third inning.
Franklin had a solid hit to score Ingwerson in the fourth inning for the Diamondbacks. Cole McCown, who had four hits in the game, doubled to start the fourth inning for the Angels. Quinn Thompson singled to right to score McCown for a run. The inning ended with the Diamondbacks ahead 5-3.
Bales singled in the fifth inning and Fuller walked to get two runners on for the Diamondbacks in the fifth inning. Ingwerson hit a ball to right field to score two runs to make it 7-3.
The Angels refused to give up despite trailing by four runs in the bottom of the sixth and final inning. They quickly loaded the bases and scored two runs on hits by Derick Hamm, Brian Garrison and McCown. Thompson singled to right field and Josh Edwards walked to load the bases again.
Daniel Perry came to the plate and popped out. Dayne Metz hit a high ball to deep centerfield, which looked like it was going to be a home run, but Garver caught the ball for the second out, and McCown scored to make it 7-6.
Garver got the ball to Ingwerson who was at second base, because he saw Thompson had left early from second. No out was called at second and Thompson was headed for home, trying to tie the game. Ingwerson threw the ball home to Fuller, who tagged out Thompson as he was sliding into home plate, for the third out, giving the Diamondbacks the championship. As it turned out, Thompson left early and was called out, negating the play at home plate.
Members of the championship team include Tyler Blickenstaff, Frankie Shepherd, Jacob Garver, Justin Hance, Calder Bailey, Travis Fuller, Brian Bales, Josh Franklin, Logan Loflin, Skyler Ingwerson, Josh Peery and Chris Peery. Mark Shepherd managed the team and Ray Bailey and Rob Blickenstaff were the coaches.
To end the season, Angels first baseman Devin Edwards received the Sportsmanship Award from Susanville Little League. In the championship game, Edwards made three outs, one unassisted on a ground ball and two thrown to first base. This was the first year of this award and Edwards won on a unanimous vote by the coaches of the Susanville Little League. Last season, Edwards played first base and in the Minors he was a pitcher. Congratulations Devin on an outstanding year!
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