The opening round of the Little League World Series brought a few surprises— the biggest being when Canada upset Japan on Friday.
The Canadian team, from Hastings Community Little League in Vancouver, British Columbia, defeated the Chofu Little Leaguers from Tokyo, Japan, 10-4 to pull off something that hadn’t been done in 51 years. It was Japan’s first opening-round loss since 1965.
Canada’s Loreto Siniscalchi led his team to the win by striking out 13 in 5 2/3 innings. Japan was the defending champion and has won four times in the last six years. Japan plays Caribbean on Saturday in an elimination game.
Now that the opening round is complete, the focus shifts to elimination games as four teams play for a chance to continue in the tournament on Saturday.
The Little League World Series features the eight top Little League teams from the United States and the eight best international teams. The crop of talented 11- and 12-year-old baseball players will play in two double-elimination tournaments. The eventual U.S. champion will go up against the international champion on August 28 to vie for the the Little League World Series champion title. In each of the last four years, an international team has been crowned the champion.
Latin America def. Mexico, 10-2
Mid-Atlantic def. New England, 7-2
Australia def. Europe-Africa, 3-1
Southeast def. Northwest, 3-2
Canada def. Japan, 10-4
Midwest def. West, 5-1
Asia-Pacific def. Caribbean, 3-0
Great Lakes def. Southwest, 11-1
All times Eastern
Game 9: Mexico vs. Europe-Africa, Volunteer Stadium, 12 p.m.
Game 10: Northwest vs. New England, Lamade Stadium, 3 p.m.
Game 11: Japan vs. Caribbean, Volunteer Stadium, 6 p.m.
Game 12: West vs. Southwest, Lamade Stadium, 8 p.m.
Game 9: Mexico 12, Europe-Africa 7
Game 10: New England 8, Northwest 0
Game 11: Caribbean 2, Japan 1
Game 12: West 5, Southwest 0