LITTLE LEAGUE MAJORS BASEBALL - Tigers burn bright, win BILL Majors title

(Top) Tigers pitcher Jake Shimmin throws a pitch in their 8-3 win over the Diamondbacks in the BILL Majors championship game Friday (bottom) as fans packed Rotary Field to cheer on both teams. - Brad Camp/Staff Photos
(Top) Tigers pitcher Jake Shimmin throws a pitch in their 8-3 win over the Diamondbacks in the BILL Majors championship game Friday (bottom) as fans packed Rotary Field to cheer on both teams.
— image credit: Brad Camp/Staff Photos

They make a Cinderella run through the playoffs to win it all.

A Cinderella run through the playoffs led to a Little League Championship for the Tigers.

Unlike their prior playoff games in which they rallied from deficits to win, the survivors of the American League playoffs jumped out to an early lead in the championship game.

They never let their National League counterparts in the Diamondbacks, back in the hunt, winning the Bainbridge Island Little League baseball title game 8-3 last Friday.

The setting at Lower Rotary field was, once again, idyllic for Little League baseball.

The stands were full, with a standing room only crowd filling the holes behind the outfield fences and up on the hill behind the first base dugout.

Partly cloudy skies and a temperature that was unnoticeable contributed to a comfortable and exciting evening for all those who came to watch.

Facing the Diamondbacks’ Jacob Christiansen, who had dazzled on the mound in the National League championship game, the Tigers collected their early lead with a collection of base hits by Gus Green, Jake Shimmin, and Casey McKay.

RBI singles from Shimmin and McKay scored four runs in the top half of the first inning.

The Diamondbacks came right back in the bottom of the inning against the Tigers’ Jake Shimmin, scoring two runs thanks to hits from Ben Kussie, William Houser and Scott Wyman.

Both starting pitchers then kept the offense at bay.

The score remained 4-2 through four innings thanks to some excellent defense on both sides, specifically the Diamondbacks’ Michael Crowley, who went behind the bag at second for one force, and dove to his right to snare a line drive which turned into a double play.

The new Little League pitch count limits forced both managers to bring in relief help in the later innings.

The outcome was sealed when the Tigers scored four more runs, when another collection of hits, including a Gus Green double, were assisted by the Diamondbacks vaunted defense making some uncharacteristic mistakes. In the end, a fine night at the plate by the Diamondbacks Ben Kussie, who was 2 for 3, was overcome by seven different Tigers hitting safely, including two hits each from Shimmin, Green and McKay.

Shimmin pitched five innings with three strikeouts and just two earned runs. McKay pitched one inning of scoreless relief with one strikeout.

Christensen pitched three innings for the D’backs while Wyman threw two innings. Crowley threw one inning with three strikeouts.

For the Tigers, Green was 2 for 4 with a double, Shimmin 2 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs scored.

McKay was 2 for 3 with two RBI’s and a double.

The BILL All-Star teams were also announced last week.

The district tournaments will be held in Poulsbo and Port Orchard.

National League 11-12 - Manager: Bill Ackerley. Players: Ricky Ackerley, Baxter Allen, Joshua Barlet, Nicholas Bierly, Topher Bucy, Michael Crowley, Cory Daniels, Brett Green, Will Houser, Paimon Jaberi, Tyler Riely, Zander Silverman, Aeden Vickers.

American League 11-12 - Manager: Brian Shimmin. Players: Danny Drewry, Ben Eager, Gus Green, Alec Greiwe, Alex Hoover, Sam Kallas, Max LaRoche, Pierre LaDorze, Casey McKay, Sam Orrey, Tino Peleti, Caleb Samson, Jake Shimmin

National 10-11 - Manager: Bill Harper. Players: Nick Barreca, Lincoln Beal, Austin Harper, Jake Hawken, Riley Hawken, Cody Hawken, Spencer Hogger, Jack Kaltreider, Benjamin Kussie, Campbell Queen, Tanner Salmon, Tim Taylor

American 10-11 - Manager: Dean Dierickx. Players: Nicholas Belforte, Andrew Callahan, Drew Dierickx, Isaac Glanzrock, Liam Greiwe, Brandon Jumpa, Harrison King, Jesse Moore, Jack Post, Max Schardein, Jacob Shore.

National 9-10 - Manager: Pete Riely. Players: Timmy Darling, Dawson Gonwick, Andrew Hoff, Wesley Houser, Brice Kozlosky, Peter Lindsey, Sam Maracich, Jack O’Neill, Joshua Parker, Garret Riely, August Rodriguez, Nick Ruggiero, Blake Swanson.

American 9-10 - Manager: Doug McCombs. Players: Richard Carillo, Gareth Grindeland, Grant Klausen, Carter Kraus, Ben LaRoche, Duncan McCombs, Trent Schulte, Colton Silvers, Marcus Tonsmann, David Wellbrock, Tommy Zech.

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