Massapequa falls to 0-3 in Junior League World Series

Kristen Moldovan of Massapequa throws a strike in

Kristen Moldovan of Massapequa throws a strike in the fifth inning against Tennessee in the Little League Junior World Series. (Aug. 14, 2013) (Credit: Dan Swift)

Kristen Moldovan, a 15-year-old girl playing on a boys baseball team, pitched 62/3 strong innings, yet Massapequa International Little League dropped a 5-4 decision in eight innings Wednesday night against Goodlettsville, Tenn. in its third Junior World Series game.

Massapequa International (0-3) also lost, 2-1, in a game against Rio Rico, Ariz. earlier Wednesday.

Moldovan, who took a shutout into the sixth, allowed four runs, six hits and a walk. She struck out four batters.

After tying the score in the sixth with four runs, Goodlettsville's Dylan Kelly drove in the game-winning run when he singled to rightfield to score Teron Smith in the eighth.

Second baseman Andrew Ditzel excelled at the plate for Massapequa, going 3-for-4 with two RBIs.

Despite Michael Cottone's complete game in the first game, Massapequa International lost to Rio Rico, Ariz.

Cottone performed well in a high-pressure spot, with his team needing a good outing from its starting pitcher after losing the opener on Monday. Cottone pitched six innings, allowed six hits and a walk and surrendered two unearned runs.

"It was a tough loss because Mikey really pitched his heart out in that game," coach Joe Pinto said. "We didn't help him much on defense and at the plate."

Massapequa scored a run in the top of the first inning. Batting leadoff, Cottone drew a walk against Rio Rico's Oscar Lechuga, Jr., and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Andrew Primm sacrificed Cottone to third and Matt Pinto doubled to leftfield to score him.

Cottone cruised on the mound from there, but so did Lechuga, who earned the win with a complete game of his own. Rio Rico scored two runs in the sixth, after a pair of runners reached base and Massapequa committed two errors.

Massapequa International, the first 13-14 team to make it to the World Series in the league's 57 years, according to Pinto, will wrap up regular pool play at noon Thursday against a team from Bedford, Ind.

The two teams that accumulate the most wins advance to the U.S. pool final. The championship against the International pool winner will be Saturday.

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