Christopher Koeiman drove in two runs with a tying sacrifice fly and Mychellon Jansen hit a tiebreaking solo homer as the team from Willemstad, Curacao, eliminated the Canadian representatives from Hastings-Vancouver 4-3 on Monday at the Little League World Series.
The kids from Kearney, Neb., have earned the state's first-ever win at the Little League World Series — and set a tournament record, too.
The Midwest champs muscled up at the plate Monday to beat Germany's Ramstein Air Base 17-1. Thirteen-year-old Jared Wegner went 3 for 4 with a homer and five RBIs in the game delayed by rain and played under sometimes sloppy conditions.
Nebraska scored 15 runs alone in the second, a single-inning record for a World Series game.
The boys were relegated to the consolation round after losing their first two games of the double-elimination tournament. Friends and family are planning a big celebration back home in Kearney.
— The Associated Press
Trailing 3-1 entering the fifth, Curacao had runners on second and third when Koeiman hit a fly ball to left with one out. Carter Kada-Wong fell backward to make the catch, but both runners had enough time to score.
Jansen then homered to give Curacao the lead for good.
Reliever Rallison Bentura pitched 2 2-3 scoreless innings to get the win.
"I had the attitude that nobody could hit me," the 12-year-old right-hander said through an interpreter.
Cole Dalla-Zanna was the hard-luck loser for Canada, striking out nine.
"Our pitcher threw unbelievable. I'm not unhappy with the effort, that's for sure," Canadian manager Vito Bordignon said.
Canada took a 3-1 lead in the fourth when Noah Hanson-Stafford came off the bench to hit a two-run homer.
Canada was eliminated but Bordignon wants his players to be proud of their showing this year, which included a 13-9 win over formidable Mexico.
Next up for Canada: a little sightseeing in Pennsylvania.
"I just told them they had a great tournament and to keep their heads up," Bordignon said. "They represented Canada well."