Lafayette Little League Comes Up On Wrong Side Of Seesaw Contest
“Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong for Lafayette, Louisiana.”
Those words were spoken by play-by-play broadcaster James P. Bitterman in the bottom of the 5th inning. And he was right. The Lafayette Little League Junior All Stars (13-14 year old) had given up a 6-0 lead they had built over the first three innings, in which they scored 3 runs in the 1st, 2 runs in the 2nd and another run in the 3rd. But over the 4th and 5th innings, Goodlettsville, Tennessee (US Southeast), scored 10 runs on only 2 hits, taking advantage of numerous walks, hit batsmen and errors committed by Lafayette (US Southwest). Tennessee had a 10-6 lead and it looked as if it was over for Lafayette. But then the game got even more interesting.
In the top of the 6th inning, Colin Thibodeaux came to the plate for Lafayette and hit a solo home run, helping ignite a rally that saw Lafayette score 5 runs in their half of the inning. Just like that, Lafayette had come back to take an 11-10 lead.
But Tennessee responded with a big inning of their own, scoring 3 runs in the bottom of the 6th inning to take a 13-11 lead into the 7th inning. Tennessee left the bases loaded.
But Lafayette wouldn’t go quietly. Colin Thibodeaux stepped up to the plate and ignited another rally, hitting a double. Lafayette scored a run to cut the deficit to 13-12. But with two Lafayette runners on base, Tennessee closed the door on the rally to take the 13-12 win and leave each team with one loss in the Junior League World Series in Taylor, Michigan.
Next up for Lafayette is the team from Arizona (US West). First pitch is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. on Thursday on ESPN 1420 AM and espn1420.com. Despite the loss, Lafayette (2-1 in the tournament) is still very much alive in their quest to play for the United States Championship on Friday night, a game that would air on Newstalk 96.5 FM KPEL. According to Bitterman, in breaking any ties between three teams that may have the same record, to determine which teams will go to the U.S. Championship Game, "the first tie breaker is runs/defensive innings played. If this is the first tie breaker when LLL plays the last game of the tournament on Thursday night it won't be how many we score but how many we give up."