Frederick County falls to Chinese Taipei in JLWS championship

Frederick County National’s run through the Junior League Baseball World Series came to an end one win shy of the ultimate prize Sunday afternoon in Taylor, Mich.

Chinese Taipei won its third straight Junior League World Series championship by topping Frederick County 12-0 at Heritage Park in a game televised nationally on ESPN. It was the fourth title for Chinese Taipei in the last six years.

Frederick County, making its first-ever Junior League World Series appearance, was seeking to become the state’s first Junior League World Series champion. Frederick County reached the World Series championship game after beating Johnston, Iowa, 9-4 Saturday evening for the United States title.

Frederick County mustered only three hits in Sunday’s loss – a leadoff infield single by Frank Ritter III in the bottom of the first inning, a lead off double by Nick Mazza in the second and a lead off single by Michael Usa in the fourth.

Chinese Taipei starting pitcher Ruei Yang Gu Lin pitched all seven innings and didn’t allow a walk while striking out five.

Chinese Taipei, which went unbeaten in six games at the World Series, jumped on the board early when Ji Hong Liu (3-for-5, two RBIs) hit a solo home run off Frederick County’s Haden Madagan with two outs in the top of the first inning.

Madagan surrendered three more runs in the second inning on a Frederick County error – the first of four in the game – and RBI singles by Lui Cheng-Fu and Liu before settling down and retiring nine straight batters.

Hao Wei Chuan broke Madagan’s string of outs with a leadoff double in the top of the sixth inning, jump starting a five-run inning that gave Chinese Taipei a 9-0 lead. Chinese Taipei added three more runs in the seventh inning, including a leadoff home run by Chuan.

Chinese Taipei tallied 13 hits in the win, including four for extra bases.

Madagan, making his second pitching appearance in the Junior League World Series, tossed 5 1/3 innings and allowed eight runs (seven earned) on 10 hits and three walks. He didn’t strike out a batter. Mazza, one of four pitchers used by Frederick County in the loss, pitched a hitless inning after relieving A.J. Wunder in the top of the seventh.

Sunday’s loss marked the end of an impressive run for Frederick County National, which won District 3, state and Southeast Region championships this summer. Frederick County advanced to the Junior League World Series U.S. championship game after finishing pool play 2-2 and edging out New Jersey and Hawaii in the runs-allowed ratio tiebreaker.