Beyond the Bison: Hawaii brings Little League World Series Champions back to America

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Beyond the Bison: Hawaii brings Little League World Series Champions back to America

Jared Shapiro, Graphics Manager

Jared Shapiro, Graphics Manager

Jared Shapiro, Graphics Manager

Bri Pomonis, Senior Writer

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Sixteen teams competed in the 72nd year of the Little League World Series. The world’s best Little Leaguers come from across the United States and the globe to compete in Williamsport, Pa. in 10 days of fierce competition. Honolulu snagged their third Little League World Series Championship, 10 years since last claiming this title, in a 3-0 shutout victory over Seoul, South Korea’s team.

The U.S. bracket featured regional champion teams from Rhode Island, Texas, Michigan, Idaho, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, and New York. Teams from Puerto Rico, South Korea, Mexico, Australia, Spain, Japan, Panama, and Canada were matched in the international bracket.

South Korea landed its bracket victory with a narrow 2-1 win over Japan, while Hawaii topped Georgia 3-0 in the U.S. championship game.

The champion and runner-up were consistent standouts in the tournament. Both South Korea and Hawaii posted 10-0 wins in the semifinals for the international and U.S. brackets. They outscored their opponents 21-7 and 26-3, respectively.

Hawaii’s powerhouse pitching was their biggest strength in the Aug. 26 championship game. Ka’olu Holt struck out eight Korean hitters in six innings while only allowing a pair of hits to secure Hawaii’s shutout.

Both finalists have an established presence in the annual tournament. Hawaii was a two-time champion going in after claiming gold in 2005 and 2008 with championship appearances in 1988 and 2010. South Korea had a taste of victory as recent as 2014, long after winning back-to-back championships in the 1980s.

On Aug. 26, before a crowd of nearly 28,000 fans at Howard J. Lamade Stadium, a young group of boys proved how teamwork and resiliency can flourish, ultimately bringing a championship back to the United States.

 

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