Chula Vista Wins Little League World Championship 6-3

Chula Vista's Park View Little League Sunday became the first Little League World Series champion from San Diego County in 48 years by defeating Taoyuan, Taiwan, 6-3, in South Williamsport, Pa.

The "Blue Bombers" rallied from a 3-0 hole in the third inning to win, a comeback that was helped by some uncharacteristically sloppy play by the team representing the Asian-Pacific Region.

With the bases loaded in the bottom of the third inning, Taiwan's second baseman was unable to handle a ground ball struck by Park View's Bradley Roberto, bringing in the first run.

The winning rally came in the fourth inning.

Jensen Peterson hit a shot booted by Taiwan's shortstop. Nick Conlin doubled to right-center, and Seth Godfrey brought in the second run with a sacrifice fly. Conlin tied the game when he scored on a wild pitch.

A two-out RBI single by Bulla Graft put Chula Vista ahead.

The game was saved by a brilliant double play in the fifth inning by Park View shortstop Andy Rios. With one out and the bases loaded, Rios fielded a ground ball, tagged the runner coming off second base and threw to first base to get out of the inning.

In front of a crowd of 32,400 that included Vice President Joseph Biden, Park View added insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI double by Godfrey and a run-scoring single by Rios, who was not retired in any of his at- bats over the weekend.

"They can hit. It's only a matter of time. We knew they'd come back," fan Jason Desena told 10News at Oggi's Pizza in Chula Vista.

The last local team to win it all was the La Mesa-El Cajon Northern All- Stars in 1961, with a roster that included future NFL quarterback Brian Sipe as a reserve.

"It was just like yesterday, watching that team," Jim Dolan, who played on the 1961 champions, told the television station.

Chula Vista is the first winner from California since former Padres third baseman Sean Burroughs led Long Beach to back-to-back championships in 1992 and 1993.

Teams from Oceanside and Vista have also participated in the Little League World Series in the past decade.

Kiko Garcia was credited with the win, striking out six batters in relief of starter Isaiah Armenta.

The players are due to return tomorrow, but it's uncertain when they will arrive, Park View Little League board member Jerry Warmkessel told the television station.

A rally is scheduled for downtown Chula Vista Friday evening.