Another game for Gavin Weir, another no-hitter for South Dakota.
South Dakota topped California 1-0 in the Little League World Series behind a no-hitter from Weir on Wednesday. The team advances to play on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Weir’s outing produced South Dakota’s second no-hitter in the 2021 Little League Series. He threw all six innings and recorded 14 strikeouts after combining with a reliever on Friday for South Dakota’s first no-hitter of the tournament. No player even made contact with a pitch of his until the third inning.
Weir threw over 65 pitches on Wednesday, so he will not be eligible to be on the mound for the championship game on Sunday if the team advances that far. Up first is the winner of Ohio vs. California in the Tom Seaver bracket championship on Saturday
Manager Mike Gorsett said that he plans to start Maddux Munson once again on Saturday. Munson is the team’s other ace who started in the team’s win over Oregon on Monday. He pitched efficiently with a strong defense behind him, and Weir is confident that he can lead the team to another win.
“I think we just go out there and have fun. I mean, this is a once in a lifetime experience,” Weir said. “Max is going to throw amazing like he did the first time and just keep our defense, keep rolling. Nothing changes, just have fun and go out there and do our best.”
South Dakota put themselves ahead early on Wednesday when Boston Bryant scored off Noah Kuenzi’s RBI in the bottom of the first inning.
California was finally able to connect with a pitch from Weir in the third inning but was quickly shut down by the steadfast infield duo of Hayden Gorsett and Cason Medigar. Gorsett snagged three consecutive putouts to silence California in the top of the third, and Medigar helped the team reach four straight groundouts in the top of the fourth. Catcher Easton Riley had 14 putouts as well.
It is this consistency in all corners of the field that makes South Dakota so strong. Coming into this game, California had beat its last two opponents by a combined 17 runs. The combination of the South Dakota pitching and defense made shutting out such an offensively driven team look easy. This was the team’s second shutout in a row after it beat Oregon 3-0 on Wednesday.
Right before Weir hit the pitch count, manager Mike Gorsett went out to the mound to have a conversation with him and tell him he was staying in to finish this game – whether or not it meant he would be ineligible to pitch for the remainder of the tournament. Weir agreed and later said that he wanted to stay in the game, in part because he wanted to close out the no-hitter, but also because he is sure that his teammates will step up in his absence from the mound.
“We can go all the way with anybody we have. It’s not just me,” Weir said. “They don’t get – they need to get more credit for what they do. And just, they’re great teammates. I have fun playing alongside them.”
Gorsett jumped in immediately to add on.
“That’s what makes this kid so special,” Gorsett said. “That makes me feel just so proud for him, for his parents, for everyone. This is not a showman, you know, in Gavin that just kind of speaks the words. This is who he is, in the dorm rooms, and outside, the vans and everything. He’s a team player that just, you know, loves his teammates.”
Claire Kuwana is a sports reporting intern at the Memphis Commercial Appeal. Contact her at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @clairekuwana.
This article originally appeared on Sioux Falls Argus Leader: Gavin Weir throws another no-hitter in Little League World Series