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Monday, August 22, 2011
Combined no-hitter keys Pennsylvania news services

SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Brandon Miller homered and combined with starter Landon Breon on a no-hitter, leading the Little League World Series' hometown favorites from Clinton County, Pa., to a 10-0 rout Monday night against Lafayette, La.

Miller led off the bottom of the first inning with a drive to the hill packed with fans behind the right-field wall. Pennsylvania tacked on seven more runs in the second, more than enough cushion for Breon.

"You lead off a game like that and you can't help to get pumped up. The roar of the crowd was amazing as he was rounding the bases," Pennsylvania manager Bill Garbrick said.

The partisan fans saluted the Keystone Little League All-Stars from Clinton County with chants of "Keystone! Keystone!" following their latest victory. They play home games just 30 miles from South Williamsport.

Breon struck out two and walked three before Miller came on for the last two outs. The game ended after the top of the fourth due to Little League's 10-run rule.

Catcher Wyatt Koch credited Miller's homer with providing the spark his team needed with Pennsylvania facing elimination.

"It does take the pressure off," the 13-year-old Koch said. "It gets you motivated to get more runs and it helps the pitcher get a lead."

Pennsylvania faces Georgia on Tuesday.

After beating Georgia in its series opener on Thursday night, Louisiana lost its last two and was eliminated.

"Our big focus was to come in and hit the ball, no matter how much they hit. We just didn't get it done," manager Leland Padgett said. "I don't know what happened (to our bats). It's beyond me."

Georgia 8, Kentucky 5

Georgia's Jake Fromm hit for a two-run homer in a three-run ninth that helped propel Warner Robins to a dramatic win Monday over LaGrange, Ky.

"I was just trying to put the ball in play," said the 5-foot-11 Fromm, Georgia's leader and tallest player. "Honestly, I didn't think it was going to go over the wall."

Did it ever.

The high line-drive shot off a 2-1 pitch rocketed over the green center-field fence 225 feet away. Pinch-runner Evan Lasseter scooted home with the go-ahead run on a passed ball earlier in Fromm's at-bat.

Fromm, a pitcher, wasn't done. He returned to the mound in the bottom of the ninth to finish off Kentucky with two strikeouts and a groundout to help Georgia move on in the tournament. Fromm fanned 10 in 4 1/3 innings of one-hit relief.

Manager Phillip Johnson was hoping to save Fromm for Tuesday's game against Pennsylvania, but called on him in relief with his team facing another tight game. They had developed a penchant for rebounding from behind or late-game drama in the tournament run to South Williamsport.

Fromm and his teammates came through in the clutch again.

"We've always been put in tight situations," said leadoff hitter Logan Arnett, who was 3 for 5 with an RBI. "It seems like whenever we need a big hit, it happens."

Josh Goodman finished 2 for 3, including the rally-starting, one-out single in the ninth before being lifted for pinch-runner Lasseter, while Fromm finished 2 for 4.

Fromm said the bad back that had been bothering him earlier in the tournament felt much better Monday.

"Strong batter ... looks like he's healed up after that big hit," Kentucky manager Brad Bates said.

Kentucky chipped away at Georgia's early 5-2 lead, tying the game at five in the fifth after Grant Larimore scored on an error. Griffin McLarty and Travis Faith homered for Kentucky.

Faith also held Georgia scoreless for five innings in relief before tiring in the ninth.

"I don't want one pitch to define his performance ... because his performance was outstanding," Bates said.

Canada 5, Chinese Taipei 3

Langley, British Columbia beat Chinese Taipei to become the first Canadian team to beat a squad from Chinese Taipei at the series following 16 straight losses.

Yi An Pan scattered nine hits over five innings and added a solo homer in the sixth for underdog Canada. It's already the most successful showing for Canada at the series since 2005.

"We've got two wins so far in this tournament. For a Canadian team, that's the most we've had in a while," coach Jason Andrews said. "We are starting to get more comfortable with the crowds. The kids seem less nervous. I'm less nervous as coach."

With the game tied, Connor McCreath scored the go-ahead run in the fourth after singling. McCreath was sacrificed to second and later came around to score on an error.

Chinese Taipei had two chances to tie late but had a runner called out in the fourth for sliding head-first into home, against Little League rules. Pan tagged a runner out at home to end the bottom of the fifth.

Japan 13, Saudi Arabia 4

Hamamatsu City, Japan, broke open a tight game with an eight-run sixth inning and advanced with a victory over Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.

With Japan clinging to a one-run lead, Sotaro Yoshida hit a solo homer with one out to start the scoring in the sixth. Mitsuhiro Uchida, Ken Igeta and Iwamoto each added RBI hits in the inning.

Japan faces Canada on Tuesday, while Saudi Arabia was eliminated.

Asuya Otsuka staked Japan to a 3-0 lead in the second with a three-run double, but Saudi Arabia rallied with four runs in the bottom of the inning to take the lead.

Brandon Carswell and Jordan Hajazin each had RBI doubles, while Julian Kinney and Bradlee Sumner chipped in with RBI singles.

Aruba 5, South Dakota 0

Gillian Wernet struck out 12 in a four-hitter as Oranjestad, Aruba, shut out Rapid City, S.D.

Both teams ended their Little League run after being eliminated earlier in the weekend from title contention.

Aruba's ace also had a nice day at the plate, going 2 for 3 with a run. Brett Beyer had two hits to lead South Dakota.

The Midwest region champs will still remember their postseason run for a long time. They've become Little League social media celebrities, too.

"I have a lot of Facebook requests," first baseman Zach Solano said, "from people I don't even know."

Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.