An Iowa team advanced to the Little League Softball World Series semifinals Tuesday by beating a team forced into a tiebreaker after it was accused of deliberately losing a game to a North Carolina squad.
The Central Iowa team beat South Snohomish Washington 3-2 in a rematch ordered by the tournament after receiving reports that some teams “did not play with the effort and spirit appropriate” for Little League play.
The dispute arose after the Washington team was no-hit Monday by a team from Salisbury. Iowa would’ve advanced to the semifinal with a Washington win or if Washington scored three runs. The Salisbury win created a three-way tie for the Pool B title, meaning Washington and Salisbury would advance to the semifinals and the Polk City, Iowa, team would not.
The North Carolina team would have been eliminated if Washington won Monday’s game. Instead, the Rowan County squad moved on to Tuesday’s seminfinal to face the Seguin Little League team from Texas.
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North Carolina advanced to the World Series in Portland, Ore., after defeating Georgia in the Southeast Regional tournament in early August.
Chris Chadd, the president of the Central Iowa Little League, told the Des Moines Register he believed the Washington team basically “threw the game.” He said he thought Washington was trying to avoid a semifinal rematch with Iowa.
Instead, Snohomish was forced to face the Iowans in Tuesday’s tiebreaker. Pitcher Mikayla Houge had 11 strikeouts for Iowa, which held onto the lead from the third inning on to earn a spot in a semifinal game later Tuesday. Officials from Washington and Iowa did not respond to emailed requests for comment from The Associated Press.