PORTLAND, Ore. — After a dominant performance in the semifinals of the Little League Softball World Series, Tucson’s Sunnyside Little League stands on the cusp of a first-ever championship for an Arizona team at the event.
For two innings, the Sunnyside offense was dormant, but a nine-run third inning explosion led to a 10-0 win over Maunabo, Puerto Rico. The nationally televised game was called after four innings due to the 10-run “mercy” rule.
An undefeated team from McLean, Va., awaits them. The Southeast region representative defeated the East champions from Robbinsville, N.J., 6-3 in the other semifinal. The title game will be televised on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. Wednesday.
Chants of “A-ri-zo-na!” resonated throughout Portland’s Alpenrose Stadium tonight, as the Sunnyside crowd showed itself to be the most raucous among the four teams competing in the semifinals.
Coach Rene Ayala won the Junior League baseball World Series as a player in 1992, and now his daughter Jazmine is one win away from joining him as a world champion.
“Back then we played Puerto Rico in the semifinal and Southeast in the final as well, so hopefully we have the same result this time,” he said.
Read more about Sunnyside's quest for a Little League Softball World Series in Wednesday's Arizona Daily Star