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Mix secures Phillies’ title

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Mix secures Phillies’ title

Nationals relief pitcher Fernando Alaniz threw three solid innings Thursday, giving up just one run to the Phillies in a 9-4 win for the Nationals for the Northgate Little League AAA championship.

POSTED June 5, 2014 11:41 p.m.

With the bases loaded and two out in the bottom of the sixth Thursday in the Northgate Little League AAA championship tilt with the Nationals, Phillies slugger Tyler Toste hit a towering shot to center field that looked as if it would clear the bases.

Enter Nationals center fielder Nolan Mix.

Having already played a stellar game, Mix had one more spectacular play left as he leapt high to grab the ball, ending the game and giving the Nationals the pennant in a 9-4 thriller.

It took the Nationals a while to summon any offense, going down in order in the first two innings. Trailing 1-0 in the top of the third, Mitch Lill led off the the frame for the Nationals with a double followed by singles for Mix, Nate Rodriguez and Anthony Garcia for a 2-1 lead. John Perrezzo added the third RBI single of the inning to put the Nationals ahead 3-1.

The Nationals bats kept going in the fourth with hits by Luke Weaver and Marissa Harper and RBI singles by Lill (2 for 3, double, RBI) and Rodriguez (2 for 3, RBI) along with defensive miscues by the Phillies leading to four runs and a 7-1 lead. Four walks and a Phillies error led to two more runs for the Nationals in the seventh.

Ethan Reif had an RBI single for the Phillies in the fourth to score Nikko Nunez (3 for 3) and in the fifth Jacob Toste knocked in Ryan Van Arsdell (double) to bring the Phillies within 9-3. Tyler Looney made it 9-4 in the sixth when he walked and eventually scored on an error, but Mix’s outstanding catch ended the Phillies threat and season.

Both teams had pitchers that performed well. Jacob Toste had two 1-2-3 innings to start the game for the Phillies and Looney set the Nationals down in order in the sixth. Fernando Alaniz came on in the second for the Nationals and pitched into the fifth, allowing one run.

The Nationals begin the District 67 Minor Tournament of Champions against Lathrop on Saturday, June 14 at 10 a.m. at Spreckels Park Little League.

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