There was certainly quite a bit of controversy in Thursday’s Little League World Series Northwest Regional final between Oregon and Washington. In the seventh inning with the game tied 2-2, a Washington player hit a ball down the left field baseline with a runner on first base.
The third base umpire clearly signaled that the ball was foul initially, putting both hands up. However, the Washington runner circled the bases after being instructed to do so by his third base coach and crossed home plate.
After the umpires stopped play and reviewed it all on replay, they called the ball fair and the run was counted. As a result, Washington went on to win the game in walk-off fashion.
It’s clearly a tough way to lose and, to make matters worse, Oregon held a 2-0 lead in the early innings before Washington came storming back. Washington tied the game 2-2 on a solo home run in the sixth inning before the chaotic finish.
In the opening game of the Northwest Regional, Washington beat Oregon 10-1 in convincing fashion. As a result, Oregon was forced to play in the elimination bracket, which meant that one loss would end their season. However, the Oregon team, which hails from Bend North, defeated Alaska 12-2 on Sunday and also topped Idaho 4-3 to advance to Thursday’s championship game in the regional final.
Now Washington has qualified for the Little League World Series, which begins next Wednesday in Williamsport, Penn.