SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (AP) — Ryder Planchard’s pinch-hit single broke a scoreless tie in the fifth inning, and Louisiana beat Hawaii 9-5 on Saturday to advance to the Little League World Series title game.
Louisiana earned its first championship game appearance, while denying Hawaii a chance to defend the title a team from Honolulu won last year. This Hawaii club is from Maui, while Louisiana — representing the Southwest region — is from River Ridge.
Marshall Louque followed Ryder’s single with a two-run double off the wall in left, and Louisiana scored twice on passed balls to build a five-run lead.
Reece Roussel broke the LLWS record for hits in the tournament with his 15th, a two-run single in the sixth. Marshall then tripled to left, knocking in two more runs and giving Louisiana a 9-0 lead.
But Hawaii wasn’t done. The Maui club scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth before Louisiana shortstop Stan Wiltz ended the game with an unassisted double play.
Louisiana will take on Curacao on Sunday for the Little League World Series championship. This marks the first time two clubs from the elimination bracket have made the tournament final since the field was expanded to 16 teams in 2001.
David Eckert is a journalism student at Penn State University.