Manila softbelles thwart Millsboro, finish 3rd
Pitcher Mary Ann Antolihao regained her lethal form and Celestine Palma blasted a three-run home run as Team Manila pulled off a narrow 3-2 victory over host Millsboro Delaware Monday to salvage third place in the 2015 Big League Softball World Series in Lower Sussex, Delaware.
The Asia-Pacific champions shrugged off the heartbreak of an error-strewn 3-8 loss to Louisiana Sunday with a composed performance to hold off the 2014 champions.
Antolihao had 10 strikeouts.
Validating her status as the team’s best hitter, Palma sparked the strong start that gave Manila an early advantage which they managed to preserve.
Palma’s early shot scored Nicole Padasas and Cristy Joy Roa, before Delaware pulled two runs back in the third frame, where Antolihao bailed out Manila by striking out Kylie Nelson with two outs and the bases loaded.
Manila, whose campaign was backed by Mayor Joseph Estrada, Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, Philippine Airlines, and International Container Terminal Services, Inc., sealed the win with strong defensive plays.
“If were only able to keep our composure in the semifinals, we could have had a shot at the championship,” said Manila Little League Philippines president Rafael “Che” Borromeo, who thanked the Filipino community in Delaware for its support.
Louisiana crushed Antelope Valley, California, 9-1, to wrest the title. Cedelf P. Tupas
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