VSLL drops first game at World Series, but still has shot at U.S. Final


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Logan Keith had a hit and scored a run for the Viera-Suntree Little League All=Stars Wednesday night, but it wasn't enough as California won 12-5 at the Junior League Baseball World Series in Taylor Michigan. Keith, who is tied with Luc Iten for the team lead in hits at the World Series, will be back in action Thursday at 4 p.m. against the host team from Michigan.

VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala

The road to the U.S. Final just got more difficult for the Viera-Suntree Little League Junior All-Stars.

But there’s still hope.

The VSLL suffered its first loss at the Junior League Baseball World Series Wednesday night, falling to California 12-5 at Heritage Park in Taylor, Michigan.

With the loss, Florida will now meet the hosts of the tournament – Taylor, Michigan – in an elimination game Thursday at 4 p.m. The winner of that contest will play California in the U.S. Final.

It was a rough night for the VSLL pitching staff as five pitchers combined to give up 11 earned runs on eight hits – including a two-run home run in the first inning -- and seven walks while also hitting five California batters.

The VSLL, meanwhile, struggled offensively in the first three innings, its best chance to score wiped out when a runner was thrown out at the plate.

Trailing 8-0 going into the top of the fourth inning, however, the VSLL turned what had been a blowout into a close game by scoring five runs.

Logan Keith had the only hit in the inning for the VSLL, a lead-off single. Blake Strode walked with the bases loaded to score Keith with Florida’s first run of the inning. Cole Smith was hit by a pitch to score Cameron Ruston with the second run and Apollos Horrell walked with the bases loaded to make it 8-3.

Back-to-back errors by California allowed two more VSLL runs to score.

That was as close as the VSLL would get, however, as California answered with four runs in the sixth inning to put the game well out of reach.

Keith; Lucas Glendinning; Luke Iten; Luke McDonough; Cameron Simpkins and Dylan Jordan all had hits for the VSLL.