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New Mexico State Tournament Milestones

The structure of Little League Baseball's international tournament in New Mexico has changed several times since the first state tournament was held in 1957. Key events in the evolution of this structure include the following:

1950sNew Mexico's first Little League charters are established in Clovis and Portales in 1950. The next year, the two leagues enter the international tournament, and face off in an area tournament playoff. Portales sweeps the best 2-of-3 series and advances to the next level of competition in Odessa, Texas.
1956Lions Hondo Little League from Roswell wins the tenth annual Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania by defeating Delaware Township Little League (New Jersey), 3-1, at Memorial Park in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
1957Little League Baseball reorganizes its tournament structure, and the first New Mexico state tournament is held. New Mexico leagues are organized into four districts, and the four district tournament winners descend on Roswell for a single-elimination state tournament. Tucumcari Little League defeats Lovington Little League, 4-3, in the championship game to become the first New Mexico state champion. Tucumcari then advances to the Western Region Division 4 tournament, where they face off with winners from neighboring states for the right to advance to the Western Region tournament. New Mexico's champion would continue to face other state champions from neighboring Southwestern states in divisional tournament competition until the early 1970s.
1968Two new districts are formed in New Mexico: District 5 (Albuquerque area) is formed as a split from District 1, and District 6 (Southeastern New Mexico) is formed as a split from District 2.
1972New Mexico's state champion begins advancing directly to the Western Region tournament rather than first competing in a divisional tournament. New Mexico's champion has continued to advance directly to regional tournament competition in every year since this time.
1974State officials dissolve one new district and add another as part of a restructuring of the state's district structure. District 4 leagues from Southern New Mexico are reassigned to District 2 (Roswell/Alamogordo area), and a new District 4 is formed in the Taos/Las Vegas area in Northern New Mexico.
1979District 7 (Southwestern New Mexico) is formed as a split from District 2.
1982New Mexico officials use a double-elimination format at the state tournament for the first time.
1992The Albuquerque area is split into two districts as District 8 is formed as a split from District 5.
1997District 9 (Gallup area) is formed as a split from District 1.
2001New Mexico is assigned to the West Region as Little League Baseball expands the Little League World Series from eight to sixteen participants.
2002New Mexico is reassigned to the Southwestern Region when that region is formed and its headquarters established in Waco, Texas.
2005District 9 is dissolved, and its remaining leagues placed into District 5.
2008District 9 (Albuquerque area - South) is formed as a split from District 5.
2013District 10 (Northwestern New Mexico) is formed. District 10's boundaries extend into Northeastern Arizona and encompasses portions of the Navajo nation in both states.
2015State officials revise the state tournament format. Rather than advancing all district champions to a larger, single-site state tournament, district winners advance to one of two brackets held in Northern and Southern locations. Each bracket then advances two leagues to a four-team state finals.
2019State officials again begin advancing all district champions to the state tournament.
2023New Mexico officials consolidate the state's structure and reduce the number of districts in the state to six. Districts 1, 3, and 6 are all dissolved, along with the inactive District 10.

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