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Jackie Robinson West Falls to Las Vegas in Little League World Series

By Justin Breen | August 17, 2014 2:57pm
 Jackie Robinson West's Little Leaguers are shown after winning their first Little League World Series game Thursday against Lynnwood, Washington. They lost to Las Vegas on Sunday.
Jackie Robinson West's Little Leaguers are shown after winning their first Little League World Series game Thursday against Lynnwood, Washington. They lost to Las Vegas on Sunday.
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CHICAGO — Jackie Robinson West's hot bats were cooled down Sunday during a 13-2, four-inning loss to Las Vegas in a Little League World Series winners bracket game at historic Lamade Stadium in South Williamsport, Pa.

The defeat sends the Morgan Park-based squad into a must-win game against Cumberland, Rhode Island, 7 p.m. Monday on ESPN2 in the double-elimination tournament.

The team's coach, Darold Butler, remains confident.

"We’ll just come out of the losers' bracket and win the whole thing that way," Butler told DNAinfo Chicago Sunday.

Justin Breen says the road got tougher after the loss, but not impossible:

Jackie Robinson West had just two hits, and its pitchers allowed five Vegas home runs, including two mammoth shots from Austin Kryszczuk.

 Jackie Robinson West players celebrate a victory over Lynnwood, Washington, on Thursday in the Little League World Series. They faced Las Vegas Sunday in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
Jackie Robinson West players celebrate a victory over Lynnwood, Washington, on Thursday in the Little League World Series. They faced Las Vegas Sunday in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
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Jackie Robinson West starting pitcher Brandon Green walked the bases loaded to begin the game, and Brad Stone cleared them with a grand slam to center field. Green threw a whopping 40 pitches in the inning, walking five Las Vegas batters.

Green helped his own cause with a single off 6-foot-2 starting pitcher Brennan Holligan that scored Trey Hondras in the bottom of the first. Jackie Robinson West did no further damage in the inning against Holligan, who was throwing in the upper 70 miles per hour — equivalent to 100 mph in the major leagues.

Cameron Bufford replaced Green to start the second and allowed a one-out homer to left by Kryszczuk for a 5-1 Vegas lead.

Jackie Robinson West answered in the second with a run-scoring infield single by Bufford, but Las Vegas tacked on three runs on three two-out singles in the third for an 8-2 advantage.

In the fourth, Dominic Clayton and Zach Hare each hit two-run homers to extend Vegas' lead to 12-2. Pierce Jones relieved Bufford, and on his second pitch, gave up a towering solo home run to Kryszczuk, which gave Vegas a 13-2 edge.

Holligan went the distance with six strikeouts.

"Jackie Robinson West has shown us before they know how to come back and dig their heels in when they're down — and I have faith that they'll do it again when they take the field again," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said after the loss. "No matter the outcome, though, they are winners in every sense of the word and have earned a place in the hearts of Chicagoans."

Jackie Robinson West crushed Lynnwood, Washington, via mercy rule, 12-2, in five innings on Thursday behind three home runs and a triple from Jones.

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