ATLANTA–From an American perspective, you cannot tell the story of the Little League World Series without including the state of Georgia.
In the last 40 years, only California (four titles) has produced more LLWS championships than Georgia (three), among the circuit of American finalists; and that figure might require an update in the coming weeks, given how Peachtree City's 'American' squad will represent the Southeast in next week's World Series in Williamsport, Pa.
On Wednesday, Peachtree City blanked South Riding, Va., in the Southeast championship round, officially punching its ticket to Pennsylvania.
In the 3-0 victory, pitcher Jansen Kenty fanned 13 hitters over six incident-free innings.
Williamsport has been the epicenter of American sports during August since 1947, attracting teams from Canada, Australia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Spain, Japan, China and South Korea to this worldwide competition.
During this span, two eras of sustained dominance stand out:
**From 1971-91, Taiwan (Republic of China) accounted for 16 LLWS titles.
**Since 1999, Japan has collected eight World Series championships in Williamsport (including last year).
Peachtree City has served Georgia in three of the last four 'Southeast' brackets (preceding the LLWS), but this marks the state's first Williamsport representative since 2011 (Warner Robins).
The next phase of the Little League World Series (Aug. 16-26) comprises a double-elimination tournament among eight American teams–covering the Great Lakes, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, New England, Northwest, Southwest, Southeast (Peachtree City) and West regions.
For its opener, Peachtree City will encounter the West champion on Aug. 17 (8 p.m. EST).
**In defeat, Peachtree City would have a short turnaround in the losers' bracket, facing the Great Lakes/Northwest loser on Saturday, Aug. 18 (8 p.m.).
**In victory, Peachtree City would subsequently advance through the winners' side, playing on Sunday, Aug. 19 (2 p.m.).
The above information emphasizes the importance of emerging victorious in the opening round. The winners get a regular schedule of rest ... whereas the losing clubs are thrust into a random, almost chaotic schedule.