WESTFIELD, Ind. — Faced with a second straight win-or-go-home scenario, the Webb City 12-and-under Little League baseball team rose to the occasion.
Webb City rode a big first inning to a 5-2 victory over Canyon Lake of Rapid City, South Dakota, on Tuesday night at the Midwest Regional tournament at Grand Park Sports Campus.
With the win, Webb City advances in the tournament to play Fargo, North Dakota, at 10 a.m. today in another elimination game. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+. The winner of that game advances to Friday’s losers’ bracket final.
Andrew Young earned the victory for Webb City. Young surrendered two runs on seven hits while striking out four in four innings. Cohen Epler and Luke Beverlin tossed one scoreless frame apiece in relief.
Canyon Lake’s Ryan Larson was charged with the loss after allowing five runs on nine hits in five innings. Larson struck out nine and walked none.
Webb City’s Beverlin went 3-for-3 with two RBI, while Epler had two hits and Drew Woodmansee drove in two runs.
The Missouri state champions took control early by pushing across four runs in the bottom of the first inning.
Young singled to center, Epler singled to left and then Beverlin recorded an RBI single to right.
After two outs, the South Dakota state champs were unable to corral a hard grounder off the bat of Jackson Pickett, and a run scored on the error, making it 2-0.
Next, Woodmansee delivered a two-run single to center to give Webb City a four-run cushion.
Canyon Lake got on the board in the second inning after doubles from Larson and Jhett Peterson, but Webb City responded with a single tally in the bottom half, as Young reached on a fielder’s choice and later scored on Beverlin’s RBI double to left.
Canyon Lake added a run in the fourth after two singles and a Webb City error, trimming their deficit to three runs.
Neither team scored the rest of the way.
Fargo defeated Kearney, Nebraska, 6-3 in earlier action on Tuesday. Fargo and Webb City are now both 2-1 in tourney play.
Coon Rapids, Minnesota, and Johnston, Iowa, have advanced to Thursday’s winners’ bracket final after starting the tournament with two straight wins.
The state champs from Kansas, Nebraska and South Dakota have been eliminated.