Bangor, Me– The Senior League World Series has been held at Mansfield Stadium in Bangor, Maine since 2002. A different champion was crowned each of the first nine years.
The pitching of Quintin Torres-Costa and a seven run third-inning helped Hilo L.L., of Hilo, Hawaii get a 11-1 mercy rule, five inning victory over Rose Capital East L.L., of Tyler, Texas. With the victory, Hilo became the first two time champion at Bangor. They also won the championship in 2003.
This same group of players from Hilo, Hawaii lost in the Junior League championship game in 2008. On Saturday afternoon, they were focused on winning not losing another championship game.
“We lost in the junior championship,” Torres-Costa said. “I feel relieved. It was running through my head the whole time. We can’t lose again.”
Jacob Spitzer was on the mound to start the game for Tyler, Texas. Things started off well as he retired the first two batters. Chayce Kaaue came up next and ripped the the first of his three hits in the game. Korin Medeiros came up next and drilled the first of his three hits in the game. That sent Kaaue home with the first run of the game.
Braden Nelson came in to pitch for Tyler, Texas in the second inning. He retired the side in order during his first inning of the work. He was not so fortunate in the third inning. It was again Kaaue and Korin Medeiros who helped get things started. They followed a Kean Wong single with back to back hits. Wong, Kaaue and Mediros all came around to score.
Kodi Medeiros, Keenan Nishioka, Andy Filoteo and Torres-Costa all hit run scoring singles during the seven run third inning.
“We got the job done,” Korin Medeiros said. “Hits after hits. It is a chain reaction.”
The eight run lead was more than enough for Torres-Costa. He allowed one hit through the first four innings. He had a very strong Tyler, Texas offense confused all afternoon.
Before Saturday Tyler, Texas averaged close to nine runs a game in the Senior League World Series. They scored ten runs against Brewer, Maine in the final game of pool play. They also scored ten runs against San Nicolas, Aruba in their semi-final game on Friday.
The offensive outburst was no where to be seen against Torres-Costa. The talented lefty will be playing for the University of Hawaii after finishing this coming year of high school. On Saturday afternoon he showcased his talents in front of a national television audience.
Torres-Costa threw only 50 pitches (36 strikes) in his complete game effort. He did not allow a walk and allowed only three hits. Torres-Costa struck out six.
“I felt really good with my fastball. I knew that was my bread and butter pitch,” Torres-Costa said. “If that didn’t work, I don’t what would of happened. My fastball works, everything clicks for some reason.”
Texas Manager Rahman Kafray added, “#17 (Torres-Costa) on the mound pitched a heck of a game. He kept us off balanced. He is probably the best pitcher we faced.”
The Hawaii offense showed how explosive they can be. They had ten players that finished with at least one hit. Kaaua and Korin Medeiros led the attack. They combined for six hits and five runs scored. Torres-Costa and Chad Teshima had two hits each.
“It was a rough game. The Hawaii team came out and swung the sticks very well,” Kafray said. “They took advantage of any kind of mistakes my pitchers made. I don’t think our pitchers came out with their best stuff. The Hawaii team capitalized on that. There is not easy way to lose but that is a good team.”
The folks from Tyler, Texas enjoyed their week in Bangor. Tyler, Texas is the rose capital of the world and they wanted to make sure Mansfield Stadium had the feel of home on Saturday afternoon.
Peggy Suggs is the grandmother of Cade Suggs (a player on Tyler, Texas). She arranged for 18 dozens roses to be shipped overnight from Tyler, Texas to Bangor, Maine.
They arrived on Saturday morning. They handed the roses out to everyone including folks from Hawaii, media and anyone else that wanted one.
Those kind of gestures are the kind of things that make the week a very special week for everyone involved. This was another very special week for Mansfield Stadium and Bangor, Maine.