Youth baseball team wins seventh Pony world title
Taiwan’s youth baseball team of 13- and 14- year-olds won their 7th Pony world championship in Washington, Pennsylvania Wednesday, with a 12-1 victory over a team from San Bernardino, California.
After getting struck out twice in the 1st inning, the Taiwanese team went on an all-out offensive. Two consecutive hits from Chen Feng ( ) and Wu Chihlung ( ) brought Taiwan up 5-0 in the first, forcing the American team to replace its pitcher.
In the 4th inning, Ho Yi-lung ( ) smacked a home run to bring the team up 6-1. The 5th inning saw the opposing pitcher still unable to control the Taiwanese team, allowing another six points to bring Taiwan up to a sizeable 12-1 lead, which ended up being the final score.
This year’s team is primarily drawn from three schools in Taoyuan, northern Taiwan. A statement from the Ministry of Education ( MOE) had asked for the country to support the young players in the competition.
In order to get to this point, the Taiwanese team had to defeat an extremely strong Puerto Rican team — which they did handily on Wednesday to gain the top spot in the finals group. The players expressed their immense glee at winning the championship, with plenty of hugs and smiles to go around.
The win comes after Taiwan’s Bronco team, consisting of 11and 12- year-olds, was eliminated due to an apparent misunderstanding of the tournament’s rules regarding the use of pitchers.
The Pony League Youth Baseball Championship has experienced rapid growth in recent years, attracting the participation of multinational teams and major sponsors. Being one of the few international sporting competitions to allow the use of the national flag of the Republic of China (although the officially registered name is still Chinese Taipei), matches are also streamed on the Major League Baseball’s website.