WACO, Texas (AP) — A three-run homer by infielder Jorge (HOHR'-hay) Gutierrez gave Pearland Little Leaguers a big head start as they beat a team of Eagle Pass Little Leaguers 5-3 to advance to the Little League World Series.
The win came Thursday in the championship round of the Little League Southwestern Regional Tournament in Waco.
The Gutierrez homer in the top of the first off Eagle Pass hurler Ricardo Gonzalez scored Beau Orlando and Blake Toler. A solo homer by Gonzalez in the bottom of the first trimmed the Eagle Pass deficit to 3-1, but Orlando's solo homer in the top of the second made it 4-1.
Armando Lopez's two-run homer in the sixth was the big blow for Eagle Pass.
Pearland will face the Midwest Region champion when the Little League World Series opens in South Williamsport, Pa., Aug. 20.