Waipio stays alive with unlikely comeback
By Fred Guzman
Talk about making the most out of a little. The Waipio All-Stars were limited to just one hit yesterday, but still managed to rally for a 6-4 victory over Hamilton, Ohio, in an elimination game in the Little League World Series.
Waipio appeared done, trailing 4-0 going into the bottom of the fourth inning as a kid by the name of Brooks Robinson delivered a two-run double at the plate and held Hawaii hitless on the mound while striking out five.
But that’s when Waipio staged the unlikeliest of comebacks.
Waipio capitalized on seven walks, three hit batsmen and its only hit – a three-run homer by Matthew Campos – for the win. Five of those runs came with two outs in the fourth.
In a word: Unbelievable.
But there’s more. Ezra Heleski, who hasn’t taken the mound since Hawaii’s state tournament, was the winning pitcher, entering in the fourth and shutting down Hamilton. He gave up one hit and struck out five batters.
That sets the stage for yet another elimination at Williamsport, Pa., involving the kids from Waipio, who will face Columbus, Ga., today at 1 p.m., Hawaii time. Waipio needs two straight wins in order to advance to Saturday’s U.S. final. And yet another win to reach the championship gme on Sunday.
But, hey, as Waipio proved yesterday, miracles can and do happen.