2006 Little League® Baseball West Region Tournament
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West Region Tournament
Major Baseball Division

Toward the past

Toward the present

West Region Tournament
Host - Western Region Headquarters; San Bernardino, California
At Al Houghton Stadium

Participating Teams City League
Arizona State Champions Phoenix Ahwatukee American LL
Hawaii State Champions Waipahu Waipio LL
Nevada State Champions Las Vegas Lone Mountain LL
Northern California Divisional Champions Fresno River Park LL
Southern California Divisional Champions Northridge Northridge City LL
Utah State Champions Santa Clara Snow Canyon LL

NOTE: The 2006 West Region Tournament used a pool play format. At the completion of pool competition, the top four teams advanced to single-elimination semifinal and championship round games.

Click here to view State Tournament results for West Region Tournament participants.

Tournament Results:

Day 1 (Friday, August 4):
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 1, Waipio (Hawaii) 0
Northridge City (Southern California) 9, Snow Canyon (Utah) 1
River Park (Northern California) 9, Lone Mountain (Nevada) 1

Day 2 (Saturday, August 5):
Waipio (Hawaii) 6, Northridge City (Southern California) 5

Day 3 (Sunday, August 6):
River Park (Northern California) 3, Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 1
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 6, Snow Canyon (Utah) 0 (forfeit; Utah declines to play on Sunday)

Day 4 (Monday, August 7):
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 9, Lone Mountain (Nevada) 5
Waipio (Hawaii) 14, Snow Canyon (Utah) 1 (4 innings)

Day 5 (Tuesday, August 8):
River Park (Northern California) 2, Waipio (Hawaii) 1
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 1, Northridge City (Southern California) 0

Day 6 (Wednesday, August 9):
River Park (Northern California) 14, Snow Canyon (Utah) 2
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 4, Northridge City (Southern California) 2




River Park (Northern California) 4 0 5
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 3 1 8
Waipio (Hawaii) 2 2 9
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 2 2 20
Northridge City (Southern California) 1 3 12
Snow Canyon (Utah) 0 4 43

The top four teams advance to the semifinal round.

Ties are broken based on records in head-to-head competition among tied teams. If a clear winner cannot be determined from head-to-head results, the tie is broken by calculating the ratio of runs allowed to defensive innings played for all teams involved in the tie. The team with the lowest runs-per-defensive-inning ratio advances.

In the event of a tie involving three or more teams, once the initial tie is broken, the remaining tied teams are again compared on head-to-head record to determine if a clear winner can be identified. If no clear winner can be identified from head-to-head results among the remaining tied teams, the runs-per-defensive-inning ratio is again used. This process is repeated until all ties have been broken.

West Region Tournament Semifinals (Thursday, August 10)

Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 8, Waipio (Hawaii) 3
River Park (Northern California) 8, Lone Mountain (Nevada) 4

West Region Tournament Championship Game (Saturday, August 12)

Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 11, River Park (Northern California) 3 (TITLE)


The boxscore points to the bats of the Ahwatukee American Little League (Phoenix, Arizona) all-star team. In defeating River Park Little League (Fresno, Northern California), 11-4, in the West Region championship game, the Dawgs posted double-digit hits and runs, slammed five home runs, including three by one player, and sent a parade of eleven hitters to the plate in a fifth inning rally that turned a 3-3 deadlock into a commanding 10-3 lead.

But the time-honored cliche in the sports world holds that, while offensive fireworks are nice, defense wins championships. Ahwatukee American is not likely to argue the point.

Defense was critical at the 2006 West Region tournament. Unlike in the power-friendly 2005 regional, when hitters cracked a record 52 home runs over the course of fifteen games, nearly half of the winners in 2006 pool games scored four runs or fewer. Six pool contests were decided by one or two runs, and only twice did teams score ten or more runs. By contrast, teams reached double digits in three different innings in 2005, when eleven winners -- and two losers -- tallied ten or more runs. And while eight games ended early due to the mercy rule in 2005, just two did the next year.

Defense made the difference for Ahwatukee, particularly during early round contests. The Arizona champions reached the championship game after scoring exactly one run in three of their four pool competition games -- a recipe for disaster for most teams at the uber-tough West Region tournament, but a scenario that produced two wins for the Phoenix crew, thanks to a pair of stellar pitching performances from right-hander Shaun Chase and a defense that did not commit an error during the team's stay in San Bernardino.

Ahwatukee's defense also provided the turning point in the championship game. River Park had erased a 3-1 deficit in the bottom of the fourth inning, and threatened to move in front with the bases loaded and only one out. Relief pitcher Hunter Rodriguez induced a force at the plate, but the next River Park hitter drilled a hard shot between short and third that appeared destined for left field.

But Ahwatukee shortstop Scott Kingery made a diving stop in the hole, and with no chance of retiring the batter, had the presence of mind to throw to third baseman David Hulls for an unusual inning-ending 6-5 forceout. Cue the momentum shift: where River Park had looked certain to take the lead, Ahwatukee instead kept the game tied and brought the heart of its batting order to the plate.

"It's amazing how defense can turn an inning around," said Ahwatukee American manager Tom Kingery of the rally-killing play. "That gave us some momentum.

"The kids came charging in after that play," he added. "Their eyes were telling the whole story. You just knew something was about to happen."

Something, in this case, was an electrifying rally. Chase followed Scott Kingery's one-out double with the second of his three home runs on the evening, giving Ahwatukee a 5-3 lead. Two walks followed, then Michael Anderson added a three-run homer over the center field fence. Eric Camarillo capped the inning with a two-run single to right field, and the Dawgs were soon on their way to South Williamsport.

"You can't predict something like this," said Tom Kingery after Ahwatukee American became the second West Region champion in four years to emerge from Arizona's District 13. Chandler National Little League, which reached the Little League World Series in 2003 and finished among Arizona's final four teams in each year from 2002 through 2005, was Ahwatukee's opponent in the 2006 district championship game.

"Just to get past them is a major accomplishment," said the Ahwatukee manager.

Ahwatukee American trailed 1-0 early, but took the lead in the fourth when Chase homered on the first pitch of the inning and, after Sam Kingery's base hit, Rodriguez added a two-run shot. Chase capped the scoring with his third home run of the day in the sixth.

"We couldn't figure out what to pitch him," said River Park manager Jim Ferguson after Chase collected the eleventh hit in his final twelve at-bats in the tournament after an 0-for-6 start. "Three different pitchers threw him three kinds of pitches and he hit each one of them out."

Ahwatukee American's hitting was less prolific in the tournament's opening rounds. Chase outdueled Waipio Little League (Waipahu, Hawaii) pitcher Marcus Yoshii, 1-0, in the tournament's opening game, allowing only a second inning single and striking out ten batters. Yoshii, who threw a pair of no-hitters in the Hawaii state tournament, scattered six hits and struck out eleven, but Ahwatukee pushed across the game's only run in the bottom of the sixth on a pair of walks and Sam Kingery's ground rule double.

"Both pitchers kept the hitters off-balance," said Waipio manager Timo Donahue. "Chase had good command of his fastball, and he had us chasing his breaking pitches."

"We had heard about the lefty," said Tom Kingery of Yoshii. "(We) were hoping they would save him for Southern California."

The next day, Arizona struggled again, this time against River Park off-speed specialist Trevor Crough. The Fresno pitcher allowed only three hits and did not walk a batter, and Jordan Luplow's three-run homer to center field in the second inning gave him the support he needed in a 3-1 Northern California victory. The loss was Ahwatukee American's first in seventeen games since the start of the international tournament.

"We've never seen anything like that," said Tom Kingery of the River Park pitcher. "He kept us off-balance with that little side-arm motion ... He was different and a good pitcher."

Kingery's team struck out 21 times in its first two games, and the Arizona manager was concerned enough to haul his team to a local batting cage prior to their next pool contest against Lone Mountain Little League (Las Vegas, Nevada).

"We were not being patient, and that comes from trying to hit too many home runs," said Tom Kingery. "When you try to hit home runs, you don't. When you try to get base hits, the ball's flying out of the park."

Ahwatukee worked on hitting the curveball during the side session, an investment that paid off when Chase and David Hulls both homered on breaking pitches in the bottom of the first inning of Arizona's 9-5 win over Lone Mountain. Chase added a solo home run on a fastball in the third, while Hulls unloaded a three-run shot to right field on a similar pitch in the fifth. The latter blast pulled Ahwatukee from a 5-4 deficit into a 7-5 lead, and Ryan Modi's two-run single later in the inning helped seal Arizona's second win of the tournament.

Equally importantly, the Dawgs' team strikeout total fell to nine, and continued to decline in every game as the tournament progressed. Ahwatukee struck out only four times in the title game, and the team's collective batting average climbed from .220 prior to the mid-course batting cage correction to .295 by the close of the tournament.

The team's pitching, meanwhile, remained rock-solid throughout, as Chase followed his earlier one-hitter with a two-hit effort in a 1-0 victory against Northridge City (Southern California) Little League.

"Their guy was really dealing," said Northridge manager Kevin Shaw, whose own pitcher, Anthony Losurdo, surrendered only four hits and did not allow an earned run. "Anthony pitched well. He just got overshadowed a bit because the other guy was lights out."

The loss was one in several tight defeats for Northridge City, which lost its final three games by a total of four runs. It also paved the way for Lone Mountain to slip into the final semifinal round berth with its first on-field win after upending the Southern California champions, 4-2, in the closing pool competition game. Lone Mountain pitcher Logan DeRosie struck out fourteen and held Northridge to three hits, and solo home runs by Tyler LeBaron and Gabe Chavira helped give Nevada only its second win over a Southern California team since 1988. The Nevada team's earlier win in the regional came via forfeit, when Utah champion Snow Canyon Little League declined to play a scheduled Sunday game out of respect for team members' religious beliefs.

Lone Mountain then carried a 3-0 lead into the late innings in a semifinal encounter with River Park, but an eight run rally with two outs in the fourth inning helped lift the Northern California team into the championship game. Joe Lynes' bloop single into left field drove in a pair of runs and gave River Park the lead, and Tyler Ferguson later capped the rally with a three-run home run over the center field fence.

Earlier, Ahwatukee used a big inning of its own, a five-run burst in the fourth, to top Waipio and advance to the championship game. Max Hardin snapped a 3-3 tie, greeting a Waipio relief pitcher with a three-run home run that ricocheted off of the pole carrying the Hawaiian flag just beyond the left field fence. Camarillo later added a two-run single before Hulls put the finishing touches on a five-hit, walk-free pitching performance.

"We didn't catch the ball early, and they capitalized on our mistakes," said Donahue, whose team committed a pair of errors during Ahwatukee's three-run first inning rally.

Hardin, who opened the first inning rally with a triple, moved from the ninth spot in Arizona's batting order to the leadoff position for the semifinal round game.

"Max has just been driving the ball," said Tom Kingery after the game.

The win pulled Ahwatukee into the championship game, where Scott Kingery's glovework and Chase's torrid hitting helped open the door for Ahwatukee to advance to South Williamsport.

"You need so many breaks, a lot of luck ... and some talent," to reach Williamsport, said Tom Kingery after his team became Arizona's fifth-ever Little League World Series qualifier.

Ahwatukee American's defense and pitching were ever-present at the Little League World Series -- the West region champions allowed just five runs and nine hits, while committing just one error in three pool games -- but the breaks fell against the Arizona team. Ahwatukee American won two of its three pool games, but was eliminated on a tiebreaker after two other teams in its pool finished with the same record.


  Pool Play Game 1 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E
Waipio (Hawaii) 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 6 0
  Pool Play Game 2
Northridge City (SoCal) 0 0 4 3 0 2 9 10 1
Snow Canyon (Utah) 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 2
  Pool Play Game 3
River Park (NoCal) 0 6 2 0 1 0 9 4 1
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 4 2
  Pool Play Game 4
Waipio (Hawaii) 0 0 0 0 1 5 6 6 1
Northridge City (SoCal) 3 0 0 0 2 0 5 5 4
  Pool Play Game 5
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 3 0
River Park (NoCal) 0 3 0 0 0 x 3 6 0
  Pool Play Game 6
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 6 - -
Snow Canyon (Utah) 0 - -
(Note - Game was forfeited to Lone Mountain when Snow Canyon declined to play on Sunday.)
  Pool Play Game 7
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 0 5 0 0 0 0 5 9 1
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 3 0 1 0 5 x 9 9 0
  Pool Play Game 8
Waipio (Hawaii) 2 3 5 4 14 15 1
Snow Canyon (Utah) 1 0 0 0 1 4 1
  Pool Play Game 9
Waipio (Hawaii) 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 4 1
River Park (NoCal) 0 2 0 0 0 x 2 2 0
  Pool Play Game 10
Northridge City (SoCal) 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 0 0 1 0 0 x 1 4 0
  Pool Play Game 11
River Park (NoCal) 0 0 2 8 4 14 16 0
Snow Canyon (Utah) 0 1 0 0 1 2 5 1
  Pool Play Game 12
Northridge City (SoCal) 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 3 1
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 0 0 0 2 2 x 4 5 0
  Semifinal Round
Waipio (Hawaii) 1 0 2 0 0 0 3 5 2
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 3 0 0 5 0 x 8 9 0
  Semifinal Round
Lone Mountain (Nevada) 2 0 1 0 0 1 4 10 2
River Park (NoCal) 0 0 0 8 0 x 8 8 0
  Championship Game
Ahwatukee American (Arizona) 0 0 0 3 7 1 11 10 0
River Park (NoCal) 1 0 0 2 0 0 3 5 1

Toward the past

Toward the present

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Last revision: 06/10/2007