Saturday, January 20, 2018
Sports

Keystone (9-10) Little League wins Baseball Tournament of Champions

Two dominant All-Star squads wrapped up region titles Wednesday night. One of those teams will continue with hopes of a World Series crown, while the other will return home after a flawless postseason run.

Like their softball counterparts who finished a successful title run Tuesday, Keystone won the Southeast Region Little League Minors (9-10) Baseball Tournament of Champions in Ceredo-Kenova, W.Va.

The Tampa-based club topped Goodlettsville (Tenn.) 12-6 in the championship game, thanks to eight runs in the first two innings.

Keaton Howard, who finished with four RBIs and three runs scored, hit a three-run homer. Dominic LaFalce and Ty Bitman continued their stellar play at the plate for Keystone (16-0, 5-0), while Joey Johnston picked up the win. He struck out the final two batters in the sixth with the bases loaded.

The victory marked the third time a bay-area team won (Citrus Park in 2006 and Plant City in 2011).

At the Southeast Region Little League Juniors (13-14) Softball Championship in Fort Myers, South Tampa (8-0, 4-0) earned a trip to the Junior World Series for the second time in three years.

South Tampa downed Toccoa (Ga.) 10-2 in the title game to cap a dominant run through state and regional tournaments.

The Hillsborough County club has outscored opponents 112-11 in the postseason. South Tampa, which has won the state title four of the past five seasons, was runnerup in the 2011 Junior Softball World Series to Croswell (Mich.).

The team returns to Kirkland, Wash., on Aug. 11. The first game will be against Asia Pacific in pool play.

From Tuesday

If the Florida natives were going leave Ralph H. Dean Recreation Park in Luray, Va., with the Southwest Region crown, the Keystone Minors (9-10) Softball team had to win two games Tuesday morning. Not only did Keystone defeat West Virginia in both contests, it dominated — winning 4-0 in the first game then 3-0.

Sydney Martin had a major hand in all five wins in region play, pitching at least one inning in each game as the team fought back.

It is the second straight title for a bay-area team, with Land O'Lakes winning last summer.

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