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Georgia and New Jersey clinch top seeds

The Southeast and East champs come through battle of unbeatens Sunday night


Photo Credit: PORTLAND TRIBUNE: DAVID BALL - Southeasts Kennedi Bedell sprints home with the go-ahead run in the second inning during its 6-3 win over Central on Sunday.



Little League Softball World Series
Pool A

Team Score
Columbus, GA
6
Tallmadge, OH
3


The Southeast all-stars out of Columbus, GA, climbed to the top of their pool with a hard-fought 6-3 win over the Central champs Sunday evening at the Little League Softball World Series at Alpenrose Dairy.

Columbus got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second inning when Sammie Cotton sprinted home from third base when teammate Kennedi Bedell attracted a throw stealing second. Savannah Lundrum connected on a sacrifice fly that brought Bedell home for a 2-1 lead that the team would never surrender.

Columbus extended to a 4-1 margin in the third inning when Jada Chadwick sent an RBI-single into the right-field gap.

“These girls know how to play with their backs to the wall, so coming back from one run is nothing for them,” Columbus coach Micky Mallory said.

The Central champs out of Tallmadge, OH, made several challenges in the middle innings. They loaded the bases in the third only to have the threat erased when Columbus pitcher Raelee Weaver snagged a short hopper in front of the circle, fired home for the force out and catcher Aiyana ‘Bean’ Taylor whipped the ball to first base to finish the double play.

Tallmadge cut the lead to 4-3 in the fourth inning when Alexis Paula-Roberts came home on a pitch in the dirt. But the go-ahead run was stranded at second base when Weaver once again fielded a comebacker in the circle.

Tallmadge was back at it in the fifth inning, but once again left the go-ahead run at second base when Weaver put together back-to-back strikeouts.

“She’s a tough kid. She doesn’t let anything get to her,” Mallory said.

Columbus gave its fans room to breathe by tagging on a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth. Kamdyn Fuller reached with a lead-off single and eventually moved to third base where a low throw bounced off the bag and rolled to the fence, allowing her to continue home. Several batters later, Lindsey Sanders curved a shot into the right-field corner to extend the gap to 6-3.

Tallmadge got a two-out double from Lauren Tecca in the sixth inning, but Columbus kept the winning run in the dugout when Sammie Cotton tracked down a pop-up at the edge of the infield to end the game.

Tallmadge went up early with Tecca connecting for a sacrifice grounder in the first inning.

Columbus (3-0) has clinched a spot in Tuesday’s semifinals, heading into its final pool-play game at 10 a.m. Monday against the Czech Republic (0-3).

“We knew tonight’s game was a big one and that the winner would probably end up first in our pool,” Mallory said. “We knew what was at stake.”

Tallmadge (2-1) plays Puerto Rico (1-2) in the final pool-play game at 7 p.m. Monday with the winner advancing to the semifinals.

Photo Credit: PORTLAND TRIBUNE: DAVID BALL - The Easts Amanda Allen races for home plate during the first inning during Sundays 12-1 win over Southwest.



Little League Softball World Series
Pool B

Team Score
Robbinsville, NJ
12
Bossier City, LA
1


• East Region champ Robbinsville, NJ, moved alone to the top of the Pool B standings with a 12-1 mercy-rule win over Southwest champs Bossier City, LA.

Robbinsville put the game out of reach early with a five-run burst in the first inning. Allie Taylor sent a two-out blooper over first base to make it 3-0, and teammate Devon Witt reached safely on a bunt that brought two more runs across on a Bossier overthrow.

Robbinsville finishes pool play against West champ Chico, CA, at 4 p.m. Monday, while Bossier City faces a must-win game against the Philippines at 1 p.m. to reach the semifinals.