Team Tanks Game At Little League Softball World Series, But Their Shenanigans Backfire
Well this is depressing. The Little League Softball World Series, a tournament in Portland, Ore., for 11- and 12-year-old girls, has been around for 41 years, but never has anyone seen something like this. The team from Snohomish, Wash., took a dive in a game against a North Carolina team on Monday, forcing a scenario in the U.S. Division in which a strong team from Iowa was eliminated. The Snohomish team, which had already qualified for the next round, didn't want to have to face the Iowa team, whom they only beat 4-3 earlier in the tourney.
The Snohomish team didn't start its best players, struck out on purpose and has almost every player try to bunt with two strikes. They failed to record a hit and lost 8-0. But the Iowa team that was eliminated appealed to Little League International, which ruled shenanigans, and decreed that Snohomish would play Iowa in a one-game playoff today for the right to move to the next round. Des Moines Register:
“The girls are pretty pumped right now [to play against the West team],” Central Iowa coach Charlie Husak said. “We’re ready to play. It’s going to be an early-morning game. We have to play at 9 a.m. PT, but the girls have a little bit of a chip on their shoulders. They are going to fight for everything they have.”
We'll update with the result. UPDATE: Central Iowa won the playoff game over Snohomish (Western Washington), 3-2. Iowa advances to the semifinals, where they play tonight at 6:30 p.m. (PT).
Snohomish probably deserved to be be disqualified for losing on purpose, but then you don't want to punish the kids who had nothing to do wth their coaches' decision. So the one-game playoff was probably the best solution.
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