2005 Delaware State Little League® Tournament Results
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Delaware State Tournament
Major Baseball Division

Toward the past

Toward the present

Delaware State Tournament
Host - Nanticoke (Seaford) (District 3)

Participating Teams
District 1 Champions M-O-T (Middletown)
District 2 Champions Canal (Bear)
District 3 Champions Georgetown

Click here to view 2005 district tournament results for Delaware.

Tournament Results:

Opening Round:
Canal 10, M-O-T 4

Winner's Bracket Finals:
Georgetown 7, Canal 3

Elimination Bracket Finals:
Canal 7, M-O-T 1 (elim.)

Championship Series:
Canal 4, Georgetown 2
Canal 7, Georgetown 6 (7 innings; TITLE)


Canal Little League takes its name from the 35-foot deep Chesapeake and Delaware Canal that abuts the league's boundary area and serves as a symbolic dividing point between Northern and Downstate Delaware.

During Little League Baseball's 2005 international tournament, the New Castle County league's all-star team took its name to heart: Canal dug itself into of a series of canal-sized holes as it progressed through tournament play.

Each time, however, Canal climbed out of the hole, and managed to remain alive in the tournament. The Bear-based squad fell into the elimination bracket in the District 2 tournament, but rebounded and claimed the district title on Alex Zwier's three-run walk-off home run against Newark National Little League. Canal then tumbled into the elimination bracket in the state tournament with a loss to Georgetown Little League, but rallyied for a pair of victories to set up a winner-take-all rematch in the tournament's championship game.

In that final game, Canal dug itself into yet another hole, but again climbed out. Canal overcame a two-run deficit in the bottom of the sixth inning, forcing extra innings before eventually claiming the state championship with a seven inning, 7-6 victory.

With the win, Canal earned its first state championship in the major baseball division since 1994, and advanced to the Mid-Atlantic Region tournament in Bristol, Connecticut.

"They have had their backs to the wall all tournament long," said Canal manager Rick Peterson of his players.

"It seems like it has been so many times that we've come back down in the sixth inning . . . they always find a way to come back."

"Canal just wouldn't lay down," said Georgetown manager Timmy Conaway. "They're a tough ballclub."

"Cardiac Canal", as one team parent dubbed the squad, capitalized on a string of Georgetown miscues during their season-rescuing title game rally. Zwier reached on an error to open the inning, and one out later, moved to third on Eric Peterson's single to center. Chris Doherty then hit a comebacker, but Georgetown's shortstop mis-handled the throw on an attempted force at second base, leaving the bases loaded.

Chris Sardo then drove in Zwier with a two-strike RBI single to center, and Peterson scored the tying run on a passed ball.

One inning later, Lincoln Lambert reached on an infield single, moved to third on Zwier's long single off the left center field fence, and scored the winning run on a wild pitch.

"We have played great defense all tournament," said Conaway after the game. "But the defense broke down tonight."

Canal's late rally marked the second time in the game that the District 2 champions rallied back from a two run deficit. Barrett Ryan's solo homer in the second inning helped Georgetown jump to a 2-0 lead, but Canal sent eight batters to the plate in the bottom of the inning and scored four runs. Tyler Hunter's bases-loaded walk provided the first run, then Peterson scored on a wild pitch to tie the game. Kurt Broadwater followed with an RBI single, and Hunter later scored on another wild pitch to give Canal a two-run edge.

Georgetown pitcher Eric Sharff kept Canal in check after the four-run outburst, retiring eleven consecutive batters during the game's middle innings while his team went to work offensively. Evan Urgo's two-run single in the fourth tied the score, and Kevin Guthrie's solo home run in the fifth reclaimed the lead for Georgetown. The District 3 champions added another run later in the inning before Canal struck back in the sixth.

Canal and Georgetown split their first two meetings in the state tournament, with Georgetown claiming a 7-3 win in the winner's bracket final and Canal responding with a 4-2 victory in the first championship series game. Georgetown's four-run, fourth inning rally -- spread over two calendar days when rain showers suspended the game -- was the key in the first meeting, and Guthrie provided insurance with a three-run homer in the sixth. Sharff, whose RBI single in the third put Georgetown ahead for good, pitched a complete game, striking out ten and walking only one batter. Chris Conaway had two hits for Georgetown, while Jesse Swanson scored twice in the win.

Canal avoided elimination, downing M-O-T 7-1 to earn a rematch. Zwier's three-run homer keyed a five-run, fifth inning rally, and a series of stellar defensive plays helped Canal to defeat M-O-T for the second time in the tournament. Zwier's diving catch in left center field highlighted the third inning, and second baseman Kyle Fields threw out runners at the plate on ground balls in the fourth and fifth innings.

"We had a couple of chances," said M-O-T manager Larry Mannering. "We had guys on third base, (but) they got thrown out at the plate."

The next evening, Patrick Peterson forced the tournament to a final game by throwing a four-hitter as Canal topped Georgetown, 4-2.

"You really can't ask for more than what he gave us tonight," said Rick Peterson of Patrick's performance. Patrick Peterson struck out seven, walked only one, and needed just 89 pitches in his complete game effort.

Georgetown opened the scoring in the top of the third, but Patrick Peterson and Lamberton delivered RBI hits as Canal scored three runs of its own in the bottom of the inning. Zwier's RBI single in the fourth extended the lead, before Sharff's solo homer in the sixth concluded the scoring.

"We were in this exact same position in our district tournament," said Rick Peterson. "We were able to come back and we won three games in three days . . . they've already proven to themselves that they can do it."

The next evening, Canal completed its second three-act comeback with the second victory over Georgetown.

"We've always told them not to give up until the last out of the game," said Rick Peterson at the conclusion of the tournament. "I've had great confidence in them all along (and) they've had great confidence in themselves. That's what came through tonight."

Follow Canal at the Mid-Atlantic Region Tournament -- Click here to view results.


  Championship Series Game 1 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
Georgetown 0 0 1 0 0 1 2 4 -
Canal 0 0 3 1 0 x 4 7 -
  Championship Series Game 2
Georgetown 0 2 0 2 2 0 0 6 - -
Canal 0 4 0 0 0 2 1 7 - -

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Last revision: 06/11/2006