After losing the opening game of the Section 2 Tournament, the Crescenta Valley Major Baseball Little League All-Star team had a tough road if it hoped to stay in the running to qualify for the championship game.
After surviving a one-run victory Sunday, Crescenta Valley faced West Lancaster on Monday. A win would put the locals in the title game.
Using the long ball with four home runs, Crescenta Valley punched its ticket to the championship game with a 5-2 win in an elimination game at Sierra Madre Little League.
"I've got a team of kids who know how to play baseball," said Crescenta Valley Manager Brett Ramaker, whose squad defeated Arcadia American, 9-8, on Sunday. "They are all competitors and a loss like we had in the opening game isn't going to bother them."
The win puts Crescenta Valley, the District 16 champion, into the championship game at 6 p.m. Tuesday. The locals will take on Encino, a squad that defeated Crescenta Valley in the first-round game, 14-5. An if-necessary title game would take place at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the same location.
"Both sides have very strong teams," Ramaker said of the matchup. "We just have to go out and play baseball."
Crescenta Valley received a solid performance from pitcher Braedon Bentzon, who went the distance in picking up the win with an 88-pitch effort.
With West Lancaster up, 2-1, in the third, Crescenta Valley knotted the score at 2 on a solo home run by Zack Feehan
The score remained tied until the sixth when Cody Cancelosi powered a solo home run to give Crescenta Valley a 3-2 lead. Vincent Parrott and Sam Kunz also had solo home runs for Crescenta Valley.
"It was pretty tight early, then our bats came alive," Ramaker said.