As riveting as the first day of the Little League World Series has been thus far, the second day promises to provide just as much intrigue.
The Jackie Robinson West story took center stage on Thursday, as the team cruised through their opening game with a 12-2 victory over Lynnwood, Wash. Along the way, the team also earned some new fans, as the MLB Instagram account notes:
On Friday, fans of the LLWS will be teeming with anticipation yet again as an emerging star takes the field. Mo'ne Davis, a 13-year-old from Philadelphia’s Taney Youth Baseball Association, has captivated the sports world after her performance to make it to the tournament.
Before Friday's action gets underway, here's a look at the schedule and breakdown for Day 2 from Williamsport.
|Date||Time (ET)||Game||Matchup||TV Info|
|Fri., Aug. 15||1 p.m.||5||Mexico vs. Canada||ESPN|
|Fri., Aug. 15||3 p.m.||6||Mid-Atlantic vs. Southeast||ESPN|
|Fri., Aug. 15||5 p.m.||7||Latin America vs. Japan||ESPN2|
|Fri., Aug. 15||8 p.m.||8||Southwest vs. New England||ESPN|
Breakdown of Friday's Slate
On the heels of several blowouts on Thursday, the matchups on Friday should bring closer contests.
While Japan will likely be dominant over Latin America, Mexico and Canada looks much more suspenseful. Following the first game on ESPN, the Taney team takes over in hopes of advancing past the Southeast Region.
The star for the Philadelphia club is, of course, Davis, who pitched a three-hit shutout to make the field. Davis is gaining so much popularity for her pitching that she even had a sports science segment made about her, per ESPNW:
The pitcher is the lone American girl in the tournament, but she isn't the only female.
Before Davis has her time to shine, Canada's Emma March will also play for Canada. The duo of girls marks just the third time that two females have made the field, per ESPN Stats & Info:
Emma March & Mo'ne Davis are 17th & 18th girls to play in LLWS; only 3rd time 2 girls in same year pic.twitter.com/YUQjD2gC59— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 11, 2014
Both girls will likely be the main story on Friday, and Japan is looking to start another run. A team from Japan has won three of the last four LLWS and done so in dominant fashion.
Which matchup is the best?
As for the final game of the day, the team from Pearland, Texas is primed for a good showing in the nightcap of Friday's action. The team's coach Don Smith spoke about their competition, per Jeff Ehling of ABC13:
"There are a couple of teams you look at and see the size of the kids and athleticism; and it appears they have some athleticism and you kind of keep in the back of your mind, who you think you are looking at," Smith said.
With Day 2 of the tournament bringing another eight teams into the mix, each region has a chance to make it to the final round. But as the double-elimination bracket unfolds, expect more storylines and teams to watch emerge.
Follow @RCorySmith on Twitter.