Little League: Azusa squeezes out 7-6 victory, forces dramatic winner-take-all in Section 3 title game tonight in Ontario

By Brian Reed-Baiotto
Azusa Little League needed a victory Tuesday night in the Section 3 playoffs at Homer Briggs Park to force a winner-take-all scenario Wednesday night.
Azusa will get that chance after beating La Verne 7-6 in a game that saw a combined six home runs and seven pitchers. La Verne trailed 7-2 heading into the bottom of the fifth inning after being thoroughly dominated by Azusa starting pitcher Benny Torres.
Torres went four complete, but couldn’t take the mound in the fifth inning after hitting the tournament’s 85-single-game pitch limit.
The towering Azusa star, however, got 11 of his 12 outs via strikeout and allowed two runs and two hits.
La Verne, though, immediately jumped on Azusa reliever Joe Elizalde, who replaced Torres, for four fifth-inning runs that included back-to-back solo shots from Noah Woodall and Max Urrutia.
But Azusa’s Edwin Anota was able to get Woodall on a 3-and-0 pitch to ground out to third to end the game with Woodall represented the winning run.
Woodall, the La Verne ace, will get the ball tonight at 7 as the tournament’s best two teams meet for the third time with a trip to the Sub Divisional in Long Beach on the line.
Azusa jumped on La Verne starter Joe LaFountain for four first-inning runs when Sergio Ramirez hit the first of his two solo home runs and Jason Nunez connected on a three-run blast to take a 4-0 lead before La Verne had picked up its bats.
Jesse Ramirez doubled home Matt Marshall in the second to get La Verne to within 4-1, but Ramirez and Shawn Whitworth hit third-inning home runs to bump the Azusa lead to 6-1.
Jerry Terry stopped the bleeding on the mound for La Verne with six strikeouts in three innings to set the stage for the comeback.
But Anota, who started Saturday in the tournament opener in a 5-0 loss to La Verne and didn’t retire a batter, clutched up Tuesday and has his team in the title game.

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  • AZTEC PRIDE

    Good luck coaches and Azusa little league tonight. Good to see AzusA being recognized in Fred’s blog. Thanks Fred”