They are competing with other teams including Hongkong, Indonesia, Japan and South Korea. The winner will represent the region in the Little League World Series to be held from July 31 to August 6 at Livermore, California, USA.
The Philippines finished 3rd place in last year’s AsPac competition held in Guangzhou, China. South Korea won while Japan placed second.
“We played well today but we will not keep our guard down. The boys should keep in mind what I have been telling them,” Naval added. “Team spirit.”
Tomorrow, the Philippines will face last year’s AsPac winner South Korea.
When Japan outclassed the Philippines, 8-0, on Monday, the Japanese broke away in the second inning, 5-0, to eventually beat the Sarangani players in their baptism of fire in international baseball.
Coach Naval said his boys played well against Japan, which is used to playing in the World Series.
A contingent of supporters led by Sarangani Gov. Steve Solon, Vice Gov. Elmer de Peralta, Maitum Mayor Alexander Bryan Reganit and provincial board members is here to cheer the Sarangani players.
Some parents from Maitum were also on hand to witness the team’s first foray in the July 11 to 17 AsPac qualifying tournament. Some of the Philippine team’s players are from South Cotabato and Cotabato province. (By Jake Narte, with Cherry Marie Irish D. Cruz in Alabel/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)