Little League World Series Schedule: Highlighting Weekend's Best Matchups
With every team having a game under their belt at the Little League World Series, there are some dynamic matchups coming towards us on the weekend.
The two pools (United States and International) will break off into a loser's and winner's bracket. In this double elimination tournament, one more loss for the teams in the loser bracket will mean their tournament will be over.
Meanwhile, just because the teams in the winner's bracket enjoy a bit of a cushion doesn't mean their motivation to win is diminished. It is a far easier path to the finals through the winner's bracket.
So, have a look at the schedule, and then I'll break down the three matchups I'm most looking forward to.
Schedule info via LittleLeague.org.
|9||Sat., Aug. 17||Caribbean vs. Australia||12 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN|
|10||Sat., Aug. 17||Southwest vs. Southeast||3 p.m.||Lamade||ABC|
|11||Sat., Aug. 17||Canada vs. Europe-Africa||6 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN|
|12||Sat., Aug. 17||Great Lakes vs. Midwest||8 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|13||Sun., Aug. 18||Latin America vs. Mexico||12 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN2|
|14||Sun., Aug. 18||Northwest vs. New England||2 p.m.||Lamade||ABC|
|15||Sun., Aug. 18||West vs. Mid-Atlantic||5 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN|
|16||Sun., Aug. 18||Asia Pacific vs. Japan||7 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN2|
|A||Mon., Aug. 19||Loser of G9 vs. Loser G10||12 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN2|
|17||Mon., Aug. 19||Loser G16 vs. Winner G9||2 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN|
|18||Mon., Aug. 19||Loser G15 vs. Winner G10||4 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|19||Mon., Aug. 19||Loser G13 vs. Winner G11||6 p.m.||Volunteer||ESPN2|
|20||Mon., Aug. 19||Loser G14 vs. Winner G12||8 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN2|
|B||Tues., Aug. 20||Loser G11 vs. Loser G12||1 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|21||Tues., Aug. 20||Winner G17 vs. Winner G19||4 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|22||Tues., Aug. 20||Winner G18 vs. Winner G20||8 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN2|
|23||Wed., Aug. 21||Winner G13 vs. Winner G16||4 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|24||Wed., Aug. 21||Winner G14 vs. Winner G15||8 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|25||Thurs., Aug. 22||Winner G21 vs. Loser G23||4 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|26||Thurs., Aug. 22||Winner G22 vs. Loser G24||8 p.m.||Lamade||ESPN2|
|27||International Championship||12:30 p.m.||Lamade||ABC|
|28||U.S. Championship||3:30 p.m.||Lamade||ABC|
|29||Third Place Game||11 a.m.||Lamade||ESPN|
|30||World Series Championship||3 p.m.||Lamade||ABC|
Southwest vs. Southeast on Sat., Aug. 17 at 3 p.m ET
After advancing to the LLWS in style with a no-hitter in the regional championship game, the Southwest team gave up four runs in the top of the first to the Northwest squad en route to losing, 8-4.
Meanwhile, the Southeast champs took a 2-1 lead into the bottom of the fifth, only to surrender two in the bottom of the inning to lose to New England, 3-2.
The players from Tennessee have to deal with the trauma of their blown lead. It will be vital to get off to a fast start, or team confidence will rapidly fall.
That also makes it the Southwest's job to try and force the action early in hopes of gaining early momentum.
One thing is for certain, none of these kids are going to want to go home early.
West vs. Mid-Atlantic on Sun., Aug. 18 at 5 p.m. ET
The squad from Chula Vista, California has reason to be a little concerned about its offense. In its first game, the boys mustered just three runs off of five hits. However, that was five more hits than their opposition, Great Lakes, tallied.
Grant Holman pitched a game he isn't soon to forget. The ace recorded 13 strikeouts in his seven innings and now his team will be riding a high.
Meanwhile, the Mid-Atlantic team celebrated its trip to Williamsport, Pa. by posting five runs in the first inning and went onto win, 6-3.
While it was an impressive performance for Mid-Atlantic, it's hard not to like the West. A team from California has won two of the last four LLWS, and Chula Vista will use that fact to boost their confidence. Can they win without Holman on the mound?
Asia Pacific vs. Japan on Sun., Aug. 18 at 7 p.m. ET
What about the two titles California hasn't won in the past four years? Those belong to Japan. The defending champs cruised to a 7-3 victory over Europe-Asia in the first game, but it displayed some uncharacteristic sloppiness.
Three errors were committed by the boys from Musashi Fuchu as their opponents were limited to just two hits.
Asia Pacific, on the other hand, suffered no such lapses on defense. It committed no errors while steamrolling Canada, 10-2.
With the dominant performance, Asia Pacific was able to limit the innings of its pitchers. In other words, it is in great shape for this game in what should be a wonderful contest.
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