Little Legals take pennant


Albert Adriano pitches for the Kagman Little Legals during their second game against the Comets in the Majors division of the 2019 Saipan Little League Baseball at the Capitol Hill Ballfield. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

The Kagman Little Legals shut down the Comets, 3-0, to win the pennant in the Majors division of the 2019 Saipan Little League Baseball last Sunday at the Capitol Hill Ballfield.

Starting pitcher Albert Adriano threw a two-hitter and struck out 12 to hand the defending champions the No. 1 spot in the team rankings at the end of the regular season. The Little Legals finished the elimination with a 9-3 record, while the Comets had an 8-4 mark to settle for No. 2.

Adriano also scored one of the Little Legals’ three runs at the bottom of the first inning, giving the team the early control in the match. Adriano reached off Comets pitcher Patty Mendiola’s error, while leadoff batter Frankie Delos Santos also scored from their foe’s miscue. Greg Perez gave the defending champions their third and last run, as he was driven in by Austin Diaz’s double.

Earlier at the top of the first, the Comets had a 1-2-3 inning with Adriano fanning leadoff batter Baron Bowie and James Blas. Second batter Javen Camacho also went out on a 6-3 play.

Adriano continued to frustrate the Comets in the next four innings he worked the mound. In the second inning, Comets leadoff batter Justin Camacho made it to as far as third base, but after Adriano gave up a single to him, the Little Legals pitcher struck out the next two batters and left the former and Jesus Tyquengco stranded after fanning Isidro Lizama.

Adriano got three more strikeouts in a quick top of the third inning and although the Comets had more batters making it to the plate in the fourth, the Little Legals pitcher still prevented them from making it past second base. James Blas led off for the Comets, advanced off the Little Legals’ error at first base, and reached second after Adriano walked Patty Mendiola. Adriano then got back-to-back strikeouts and ended the inning in the ensuing play after throwing to Perez at third base for the tag out on Blas.

For his final pitching duty, Adriano was still on a zone, as he fanned leadoff batter Isidro Lizama and after giving up a single to Sam Aldan, the pitcher struck out Bowie. The Comets were then done after four batters with Javen Camacho flying out at right field.

Austin Diaz relieved Adriano and though the former gave the Little Legals some anxious moments, he still delivered and finished off the Comets. Diaz walked leadoff batter James Blas and allowed a single to Justin Camacho. Blas was then able to reach third base and Camacho moved to second, but the Comets just could not hit the board, as Diaz struck out the next two batters—Mendiola and Greg Tebit—while first baseman Jared Muna caught a fly ball from Tyquengco.

With the victory and the No. 1 seeding, the Little Legals arranged a semis duel against No. 4 Falcons (7-5) this Saturday. The Comets, on the other hand, will challenge McDonalds, which also held an 8-4 mark, but dropped to No. 3, as the former allowed the lesser runs in the regular season.

Braves 11, Twins 10
The NSA Braves rallied in the last two innings to win their final game of the season.

Behind by six after four complete innings, 4-10, the Braves scored five runs at the bottom of the fifth and got two more in the sixth to steal the victory from the Twins.

Krafits Eliasair made the winning hit with his double driving Jacob Babauta home. Leadoff batter Marino Santos earlier scored the game-tying run for the Braves, who finished the season with a 3-9 mark, while the Twins failed to win a single game in the competition.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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