Alabama coach Terry Albano said he "just hoped to make it to the semifinals." Pitcher Blake Elmore said he "just didn't want to mess up in front of so many people."
Get ready for prime time on Thursday.
Alabama jumped all over North Palm Beach from the start, winning 6-2 in one semifinal while Georgia defeated Virginia 3-2. Alabama and Georgia meet Thursday night at 8 for the Little League Southeast Regional championship, which will air live on ESPN, at Arnold S. White Stadium.
"I was so nervous," Elmore said. "I was praying before every pitch."
Alabama sent eight batters to the plate in the first inning, pushing across three runs. Mason McCullough doubled home Winston Mathis and Elmore followed with an opposite-field homer to rightfield.
"I thought it was just a flyball when I hit it," Elmore said. "But it just kept going further and further."
Alabama scored three more in the third, extending its lead to 6-1. McCullough led off with a homer to left and Connor Albano added an RBI single. Elmore earned the win, going 51/3 innings, fanning five while giving up one earned run.
GEORGIA 3, VIRGINIA 2: Marshall Peters led off the game with a home run and Virginia tacked on another run in the second to take a 2-0 lead. But Georgia responded in the third with three runs on back-to-back homers. Micah Wells hit a one-out single before Zane Conlon belted a two-run shot to deep left. Dalton Carriker followed that up with a line drive that just made it over the fence in rightfield.
Clint Wynn picked up the victory, giving up five hits while striking out four. Two of Wynn's four punchouts came in the final inning, including the last batter.
S.C. 19, WEST VIRGINIA 15: The teams combined for 32 hits and seven home runs. West Virginia (Alan Mochabee two, Andy Mochabee, Jacob Whitmore) had four long balls while South Carolina (Chase Day, Erven Roper, Corbin Lee) hit three.
N.C. 11, TENNESSEE 4: North Carolina scored seven runs in the eighth inning. Cameron Snow (3-for-5) hit a three-run homer in the inning and picked up the win. Brad Roepke and Alex Butaud went deep for West Virginia.
Brandon Wright can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 892-2216.
Where: Arnold S. White Stadium, 658 58th St. S, Gulfport
Directions: Take 5th Ave. N. exit in St. Petersburg and at the end of the ramp turn right (west). Follow 5th Ave. to 58th St. and turn left (south). Continue on 58th St. to 7th Ave. S. The stadium is on the left just past the Royal Palms Cemetery. Parking is available in Boca Ciega High parking lot.
Alabama vs. Georgia, 8 p.m. live on ESPN