VILSECK, Germany — South Africa’s powerful bats and stifling pitching produced a 10-0 mercy-rule victory over Ukraine in Saturday’s championship game of Little League Baseball’s European Big League regional tournament.
Peter-John Abrams launched a grand slam, his fourth home run in six tournament games, to secure the championship in this event for 16-19-year-olds. Graham Julius hit a solo homer for South Africa’s first run, and Luwayne Duplessis added a two-run shot.
Starting pitcher David Ricardo went the distance for South Africa, yielding just one hit in five innings before Abrams’ slam invoked the 10-run mercy rule.
It was South Africa’s second victory over Ukraine. On Wednesday, South Africa (6-0) rallied for three runs in the final inning to edge Ukraine 5-4 during the round robin portion of the tournament. The victory also earned South Africa a berth in the Big League World Series in Easley, S.C., on Aug. 2-9.
Kids ages 14-16 from six teams are vying this week for the right to represent the Europe Region in the Senior Little League World Series next month in Bangor, Maine.
In the only other game Saturday, Poland downed Austria, 15-5. The game was stopped in the 5th inning under the 10-run rule.
The tournament continues Sunday with the Arabian-American team facing Germany at 9:30 a.m.; Poland will play Germany International — which is represented by players from the Ramstein, Vogelweh and Sembach U.S. military communities — at 12:30 p.m.; and Russia will play Austria at 3:30 p.m.
There will be three games every day through Thursday.