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Giants fall one win short

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Giants fall one win short

Wyatt Nichelson strokes the big hit for the Manteca Little League Giants, driving in two and breaking a scoreless tie in their win against Salida.


POSTED June 25, 2012 1:52 a.m.

The Manteca Little League Giants answered the call Saturday, forcing a championship deciding game Sunday with a 4-1 win over Salida.

The win would be the clubs’ last after they fell in the title game 14-10.

“We came into this tournament down one of our best players and everyone stepped up,” said Giants coach Don Nichelson. “We won six in a row and unfortunately with that many games, you’re bound to lose one and sometimes the better team doesn’t win.  Words couldn’t even describe how proud I am of these kids and what they did this season.”

The Giants took command of the first meeting with a two-run RBI double from Wyatt Nichelson, plating the games’ first two runs. The Giants would add two more and Salida would only push across one, giving the Giants one last shot at the District 67 Minor Tournament of Champions title.

The Salida Aces answered each of Manteca’s rallies in the finale, breaking up a tie and pulling away for good late in the contest.

The Giants defied the odds since dropping their tournament opener by clawing to the championship through the rigorous loser’s bracket. After dropping game one, the Giants were forced to play on five consecutive days to reach the Sunday championship.

Giants’ shortstop Jacob De Jesus was 2 for 3 in Saturday’s win, hitting a triple and a single and scoring one of the Giants’ four runs.

Ricky Lopez broke the scoreless tie, sparking the rally with a one-out walk. Lopez would eventually come around to score on Nichelson’s RBI double. Isaac Searcy would push across the Giants’ final run Saturday.

River Weahunt went 3-for-3 for the Giants driving in four runs.

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