Orange's run ends in disappointment
SAN BERNARDINO – After winning nearly 20 games to qualify for the Little League Western Regional, Orange's prolonged summer came down to Wednesday night's must-win game against Cheyenne Little League of Nevada.
With one game of pool play remaining and both teams sitting at 1-2, the winner would nab Friday's fourth and final semifinal spot and keep its Williamsport aspirations alive.
Thanks to an offensive outburst that included 20 hits and seven extra-base hits, Cheyenne extended its Western Regional run with an overpowering 16-7 victory over Orange at Al Houghton Stadium.
In the tournament's highest scoring effort, Nevada scored multiple runs — including seven in the fourth — and tallied at least three hits in each of the first four innings to pull away from Orange.
Chris Huerta (2 for 3) and Ryan Islas (3 for 4) each had a solo home run for Orange.
Chasing a three-run deficit in the bottom of the first, Orange responded with three runs on Islas' leadoff home run, back-to-back singles by AJ Esperanza (who scored on a wild pitch) and Brandon Ducheny and a one-out RBI single by Huerta.
Knotted at three in the top of the second, Nevada regained the lead on a two-run double by Jimmy Gamboa.
After a quiet home half of the inning, the visitors doubled their lead on Edarian Williams' two-run triple.
Leading 7-3, Nevada sent 12 men to the plate in the fourth inning and produced seven runs on seven hits including five consecutive one-out singles.
Trailing by 11 and facing the 10-run mercy limit in the bottom half of the inning, Huerta's leadoff home run to right field pulled Orange a run away from extending the game.