Even the 2011 Phillies didn't win every game.
The Taney Dragons suffered their first loss in Little League World Series regional competition last night. They held the New York state champs from Colonie, NY close for four innings, keeping the score tied 3-3. But in the fifth, New York scored 2, and the Dragons couldn't answer. Final score, 5-3.
The loss doesn't change the fact that the Dragons have already clinched a spot in the Mid-Atlantic semi-finals. In fact, they are still ranked second in their region (out of 6 teams) and second in the entire East region (out of 12 teams). Only the powerhouse team from Tom's River, NJ has a perfect 3-0 record and is ranked higher than Taney.
Today at 7pm, Taney faces the Washington, DC champs in the last game before the semi-finals. Washington has not had a good regional tournament. They have lost all three games and enter tonight's game against the Dragons ranked last in both the Mid-Atlantic region and the entire East. There are, of course, no guarantees, but this looks like a winnable game for the Dragons.
Having already clinched an appearance in the semi-finals, what's left to be determined are the rankings. Right now, the four teams in the semi-finals are, in order, New Jersey, Pennsylvania (Taney), Delaware, and New York. Depending on today's games, that order could switch around. The #1 team plays the #4 team Friday at 3pm; the #2 team plays the #3 team Friday at 11am. Both games will be televised on ESPN.
If you're interested in reading more about the team, the Inquirer has a writeup of yesterday's loss here, it has a long piece about pitcher Mo'ne Davis here (whose first love is basketball, but we'll forgive her), and ESPN has a great piece about Davis and the only other girl in the tournament in the entire country, Tom's River's Kayla Roncin, here. All worth your time to take a look at.