Taiwan takes advantage of
six-run inning to top Canada
After putting on an
18-run offensive demonstration in its first game, the Shou-Tien
Little League from Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Chinese Taipei was expected
to put on an encore performance in Monday’s nightcap at Lamade
The Taiwan team did
not disappoint the 5,900 in attendance.
The Shou-Tien Little
League (2-0) defeated the East Nepean Little League from Ottawa,
Ontario, Canada (0-2) 7-2. The victory assures Taiwan a spot in an
International semifinal either Wednesday or Thursday. Taiwan faces
the Latin America Champion Panama (also 2-0) Tuesday at 5 p.m. to
determine who emerges out of pool C as the number one seed.
Canada looked as if it
had a chance to compete with juggernaut Taiwan early in the
contest. Canada starter Mathew DeLuca blanked Taiwan in the first
inning, striking out two and allowing no hits. Canada’s offense
even looked invigorated, spraying two singles through the infield
in the first.
The second inning was
a different story.
Eleven Taiwan batters
came to the plate as the Asia Champions tallied six-runs on
three-hits. Though a clutch two-out Texas leaguer to shallow
center field by Chen Hung-Ta did bring in two-runs, what hurt
Canada the most in the inning was the wild pitching of DeLuca.
DeLuca walked five-batters in the inning, giving Taiwan every
opportunity to post a monster number on the scoreboard. After his
fifth-walk of the inning, DeLuca was lifted in favor of Jesse
O’Byrne. O’Byrne got the final out two-batters later, but the
damage had been done and Canada was now buried in a six-run deep
“(DeLuca) just had
trouble throwing strikes,” said Canada manager Mike Crepin.
“It is not our usual
style of play to score so many runs off of walks,” said Taiwan
manager Cheng Ying-Chun through interpreter George Chen. “We are
usually more of a power hitting team.”
hole got even deeper in the next inning when Hsu Chi-Hung showed
why his manager considers his lineup a powerful one. Chi-Hung
belted a two-out solo blast deep to left. The homerun put Canada
behind by seven, a deficit it would not be able to overcome.
“It feels very good to
hit a homerun,” Chi-Hung said through Chen. “I hit the ball pretty
hard, and I did not know if it was going out, but it did.”
Taiwan starter Wang
Chun-Po had an impressive outing. The five-foot-1, 87 pound
starter scattered five-hits and struck out four in his winning
“I am doing okay,”
Chun-Po said through Chen. “I can improve my control, I can play
better, but I did okay in the game.”
Though they did not
score any runs until their final at bat, the Canada offense was
not completely stagnant. The Ottawa team was led by O’Byrne, who
was 3-for-3 with a double at the dish. Canada’s pair of runs came
on a one-out rally in the sixth.
DeLuca got things
started when he stretched a single to center into a double. DeLuca
then advanced to third on an O’Byrne single and both Canadians
scored on a double to left by Niko Van Essen. Taiwan reliever Tung
Chen-Lun entered after the double to finish off Canada by inducing
Alexandra Bellini to ground out and then by catching Kyle Craig
staring at strike three.
Canada finished the
game out hitting Taiwan 7-5.
“I thought we played
really well,” Crepin said. “Other than one inning, we are right in
that game. It was just one bad inning.”
for box scores