The New Hyde Park girls Little League team has won the Eastern Region Championship to advance to the Little League World Series in Portland, Ore. from Aug. 9 through Aug. 16.
This is the first girls team from New Hyde Park to ever play in the Little League World Series. Two years ago most of the same girls were on the team that won the Eastern Regional Invitational tournament in the 9/10 Year Old Division, but there is no World Series at that age.
The team beat was a very talented team from Robbinsville, N.J. 4-1 in the championship game and the win avenged the NHP tema’s only Eastern Region loss. Robbinsville had beat NHPLL in pool play by a score of 1-0 in a great game.
The girls from New Hyde Park went 3-1 in pool play before going 3-0 in the single elimination round. In pool play they defeated Maryland 7-2, Delaware 8-0 and Pennsylvania 9-0.
In the quarterfinals they defeated Massachusetts 7-0 before a semi final win over Connecticut by the score of 6-0. That was the same Fairfield, Ct. team they defeated in the Eastern Region championship two years ago.
The pitching staff for New Hyde Park was outstanding, giving up only four runs, one earned, for a microscopic 0.14 ERA over seven games against other state winners.
Melissa Ward won three games including the championship game. Co Ace Jenny Hickey also won three games, including a perfect game against Delaware and the semi-final win shutout against a very talented Connecticut team.
The defense was equally good for NHPLL, particularly catcher Ann Grimshaw who had an outstanding eight assists, seven of them gunning down attempted base stealers. Grimshaw completely shut down the running game for all opponents. Ward, pitching and playingshortstop, had an incredible 19 assists in the seven games.
The offense was led by right fielder Hannah Arkin who hit an amazing .643 over the seven games while leading the team in runs scored with eight and stolen bases with seven. Arkin had two huge hits in the championship game. Arkin also had a key base running play in the three-run fith inning against New Jersey to score the second run on a ground ball to second.
Ann Grimshaw batted .476 in the tournament with several key hits. Third basemen Maggie Donnelly led the team with six RBI and batted .385 while playing solid at third.
Leadoff hitter and first basemen Kayla Fitzpatrick had a .385 on base percentage and scored six big runs while playing outstanding at first base.
Emma Nidermaier and Hickey had huge at bats in the championship game. Hickey knocked in the first run by beating out a ground ball to short to give NHP the 1-0 lead in the 3rd inning. Hickey grounded to second in the fifth inning when Arkin got a great jump from third that led to a throwing error at home to score the second run and Nidermaier used her speed to score all the way from second on the same play. Melissa Ward then grounded out to score Fitzpatrick with the 4th run.
Gabby Morales had three big hits and three RBI in the tournament while playing great defense in left field including a terrific running catch in the semi final win.
Katie Tubridy had a spectacular .625 on base percentage while also playing great defense in left field including a great catch in the semi final win on a bullet to deep left. Sophia Jacoby played stellar defense at second base with six put outs and seven assist while also scoring three runs for NHP. Nicole Kuzler played great defense in the outfield and at second base while scoring three runs and adding three RBI for the team.
The New Hyde Park Little League All Stars will now travel to Portland, Ore. to play in the Little League World Series. Their first game will be against ILLMA LL from Manila, Philippines on Aug. 9 at 1pm. They will also play on Aug. 10 at 10 a.m. against the winner from Canada, Aug. 12 at 7:30 p.m. against the Southwest Region winner and finally on Aug. 13 at 4 p.m. against Kapolei, Hawaii.
After pool play the top two teams from each pool will play in the semi-final and final games on Aug. 14 and 15.