Laguna one win away from district crown

Laguna's 9-year-old All-Star squad has dominated District 55 tournament.

June 23, 2011|From Staff Reports
  • Blake Pivaroff smashed a two-run home run during Saturday's win over Northwood.
Blake Pivaroff smashed a two-run home run during Saturday's… (Courtesy Scott…)

Three impressive wins has catapulted the Laguna Beach Little League 9-year-old All-Star tournament team into the driver's seat of the District 55 All-Star Tournament.

Laguna took a spot in Saturday's championship game by rallying from an eight-run deficit Tuesday to roll past Newport Beach National, 26-16, at Woodfield Park in Aliso Viejo.

"Our kids were not at their best but showed real heart in coming back from an early eight-run deficit," Laguna Manager Taylor Pillsbury said.

Inconsistent pitching and errors by a usually reliable defense led to Laguna Beach facing a 12-4 deficit after two innings. Laguna bats came alive in the bottom of the third and the locals produced eight runs behind run-scoring doubles by James Laughlin, Aiden Kidd and Jett Rocha.

Newport Beach came back to take a one-run lead in the top of the fifth, although it was short-lived as Laguna responded with an 11-run outburst in the bottom of the inning to secure a mercy-rule win.


In the final inning, Blake Pivaroff hit his third home run of tournament and Charlie Pillsbury knocked in four runs on two doubles.

In its first three games, Laguna, the lone unbeaten team in the double-elimination tournament, has scored 58 runs.

Laguna stormed out of the gate in its tournament opener Saturday and routed Northwood, 22-10. The locals returned Sunday to post a 10-2 win over perennial tournament favorite Aliso Viejo. Both games were played at Woodfield Park.

In Saturday's win over Northwood, a prolific Laguna offense saw Pivaroff go four for five with a home run and pair of doubles, Kidd three for five with a triple, Charlie Pillsbury four for four, Lance Detwiler three for five with an inside-the-park home run, Jared Angus three for four and Trey Lockhart and Jackson Yelland both went two for two.

Angus — who started on the mound — and relief work by Rocha, Pivaroff and Pillsbury, held Northwood in check.

Pivaroff also was on target in Sunday's win over Aliso Viejo. He threw the first five innings and allowed four hits with seven strikeouts. He was backed by a defense that saw Rocha and Christian Holm make key plays at third base and in center field, respectively.

Pivaroff also had a big hand in the offensive output, going three for four that included a two-run home run in a five-run fifth inning. His blast followed a key three-run double by Rocha, who recorded his third hit of the game.

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