WHITESTOWN, Ind. (WCMH) — For the first time, New Albany is going to the Little League World Series through the Great Lakes Region after beating Illinois 4-0 in the championship game.
Kevin Klingerman dazzled on the mound during the entire region tournament: Zero earned runs, 17 strikeouts and only three hits allowed. On Thursday, he struck out eight batters and only gave up two hits in the complete game win.
Klingerman was just as impressive in the district tournament allowing zero runs, striking out 39 batters and only allowing one hit.
New Albany scored all four of its runs in the fourth inning. Jake Gilmer began the inning with a walk followed by a sacrifice bunt by Henry Bush.
Owen Nardell hit a line drive single, advancing to second after a throw home while Gilmer advanced to third. Nolan Pettinger delivered the first run of the game on an RBI single up the middle, scoring Gilmer.
With the bases loaded and one out, Cole Mueller hit a slow-moving chopper to the pitcher who tried to throw out the runner heading home. But his throw went past the catcher allowing two runs to score. Hunter Sayre, who had a double earlier in the game, beat out a double play throw, giving New Albany its fourth run.
New Albany lost to Illinois on Monday but worked its way back through the loser’s bracket, beating Kentucky on Tuesday followed by Thursday’s win over Illinois.