Bike Connection exploded for six runs in the sixth inning and broke open a tight game in a 15-10 victory over Cal Preserving to reach the Palo Alto Little League City Championship finals. By winning the losers’ bracket, Bike Connection earned the right to face Palo Alto Wealth Advisors (PAWA), who won the winners’ bracket. The championship game is at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, May 19, at Middlefield Ballpark.
If PAWA wins on Friday, they become the 2023 Palo Alto Little League City Champion. Should Bike Connection prevail on Friday, they will face PAWA again on Saturday, May 20, at 5:30 p.m. in a final, winner-take-all game.
The losers’ bracket finals was a see saw battle that saw Cal Preserving fight back from three-run deficits not one, not two, but three times only to face the relentless Bike Connection offensive onslaught in the sixth. Cal Preserving scored one run and had the bases loaded in the sixth but could not come back a fourth time. With the tying run in the on deck circle, leftie Ian Nilsen was called in to record the final out for Bike Connection.
Bike Connection turned the tables on Cal Preserving, who had trounced them 15-0 earlier in the tournament. Bike Connection’s 15-hit attack was led by Erik Lo, who had three hits, and Angel Ochoa, who had two hits and four RBIs. Liam Murphy and Anthony Chen both had two hits for Bike Connection. Lo and Micah Satterthwaite each delivered two-RBI hits in the sixth.
Cal Preserving’s offence was paced by Tiran Zia. He had two triples, a double, and a walk in four plate appearances; he also pitched three and one third innings giving up only one earned run. Zia had help from Will Kumagai and Henry Steinwert-Arrowood, each with multihit games, but his heroics were not enough.