Los Angeles, Aug. 9 (CNA) A team from Taiwan won the Bronco League World Series in the United States Thursday by defeating previously unbeaten El Dorado Hills 11-5.
It was the second consecutive year that a team from Taiwan had won the Bronco League title, and manager Lai Hsin-lung was ecstatic.
"The team played its best today, and it's really exciting to win the title. I never thought I would have this opportunity, and after managing so many teams, I've never felt more moved than I did today," Lai said.
El Dorado Hills entered the title game as the favorite, having outscored opponents 64-12 in its five wins in the tournament, including a 14-2 drubbing of Toro Park (Salinas, California) in the semifinals.
That momentum carried over to the final against Taiwan, when the California team took a 3-0 lead in the top of the first on a three-run home run.
But the Taiwanese team, composed mainly of students from Hsin Sheng Elementary School in Taitung City, quickly responded with a three-run rally of its own in the bottom of the inning.
Kuo Yun-hsin reached on an error and Chang Kai-hsiung, Chen Jui-hsiung, Kao Hsu-hsi and Yu Ya-che all pounded out hits to pull their team back into the game.
The Californian team took a one-run lead in the top of the third, but Taiwan again bounced back, this time with two runs on four hits in the bottom of the third to take a 5-4 lead.
The Taitung team extended its advantage with another three runs over the next two innings and sealed the victory in the bottom of the sixth when Hu Han-yuan smashed a three-run blast to put his team up 11-5.
Chang, who did not allow an earned run in two appearances during the World Series, was named pitcher of the tournament.
He helped Taiwan reach the title game by pitching a complete game one-hitter in the team's 4-0 victory over Corpus Christi, Texas in the semifinals.
The Bronco League, open to children under the age of 12, is part of Pony Baseball, a private organization founded in 1950 in the United States with the purpose of promoting baseball around the world.
It has developed a system of competition based on seven age groups. Taiwan began competing in Pony Baseball leagues in 1993.
(By Oscar Wu and Maia Huang)