By Tim Chambers
The Marlins kept their stronghold on first place in Little League play while the Angels kept the heat on by winning their contest in convincing fashion.
The young Diamondbacks gave the undefeated Marlins a scare but fell 15-12. The Angels rolled to an 11-1 win in the afternoon contest.
The “Big Fish” needed some heavy hitting to knock off the up and coming young Diamondbacks squad who actually led at one point during the contest.
The Marlins’ top of the order swung the bats well in the first inning and put up four runs on the board. Jordan James and Tanner Putnam singled and scored. Zack Parsons had a two-run double that scored Donnie Curd in addition to Putnam. Parsons would later cross the plate to cap off the scoring.
The D-backs bounced back to cut that advantage in half. Carson Jennings and Kaden Blevins both had singles and scored to pull them close at 4-2.
The Marlins tallied three more in the second inning but the D-Backs would do two better. James had a single and scored for the Fish. A pair of walks produced the other two.
Control problems plagued both teams and each one took advantage of it. The Diamondbacks used five walks to score five times in the second at-bat including RBI ones to Andrew Reece and Carter Rhudy. Blevins held the cause by blasting a double before the Marlins could record the final out.
The game was tied at 7-7 after two.
The Marlins pulled away with a huge five-run fourth inning.
Parsons blasted a homerun, the biggest blow in the inning. James had a double and scored. Dominic Kelly also added a run-scoring base hit.
A single by John Jennings and a triple off the bat of Reece were enough to produce two D-Back runs in the bottom half, but they trailed 12-9.
The Diamondbacks refused to quit and kept putting up runs in almost every inning. Blevins and Tuff Robinson belted back-to-back triples in the fifth and scored, getting them within one at 12-11, but it wasn’t enough.
The Marlins scored three insurance runs in their final at-bat to salt the game away. James and Putnam laced out a couple of singles and scored. Parsons doubled to help the cause, then came on in relief to pick up the save by striking out the final two batters.
James had a big day, going 4-4 with four runs scored to lead the Marlins. Parsons delivered two doubles and a homer, going 3-4. Putnam had three base hits and scored four times. Connor Stout, Kelly, Conner Gentry recorded one hit apiece.
Kaden Blevins had a monster game for the D-Backs, going 3-3 with a triple, double and single. John Jennings, Tuff Robinson, Reece and Carson Jennings had one each.
The Marlins are now 7-0 on the season.
The Angels had the perfect two ingredients to shut out the Dodgers on Saturday. Connor Simcox set the tone on the mound while some timely hits came after several walks had been issued.
Connor Simcox fired a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts to lead the Angels. There were no Dodger outs recorded in the field.
The Halos took a 3-0 lead in the first inning on a laser two-run triple off the bat of Eli Dickens. Graham Reece, Simcox and Ethan Reece would all score in the frame.
The Angels scored four times in the third after the Dodgers had recorded their lone run. Dakota Holt reached base on an error and scored for the Dodgers.
Graham Reece had a single for the Angels. He, Grill, Chris Reece and Ethan Reece would all score to make it 8-1.
Two walks, a single by Graham Reece and a two-run double from George Grill would end the game after four innings due to the 10-run rule.
Reece and Grill had two hits each for the Angels. Dickens had the other one.
Nate King, Ezra Howard, Grayson Holt and Tim Brown were able to draw walks for the Dodgers.