SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. - For Chandler National, good things came in twos. Kyle Pechloff, Luke Parrish and Seth Fretheim each hit a two-run homer Thursday night as Chandler National beat Waipio, Hawaii, 8-1 in the Little League West Regional semifinals at Al Houghton Stadium.
Pechloff was the winning pitcher. He went 5 1/3 innings, gave up one run and struck out eight.
Chandler will play Solana Beach, the Southern California champion, which beat Green Valley, the Nevada champion, 3-2.
Solana Beach is the only team Chandler National (5-0) hasn’t played.
The championship is at 6 p.m. Saturday and will be shown on ESPN. The winner advances to the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa.
“They’re (an) older team,’’ Manager Jeff Parrish said of the Southern California team. “They’re well-coached. They play good defense, and they pitch well.”
Waipio made some noise in the top of the first.
Christian Donahue opened the game with a single. After Pechloff struck out the next batter, Donahue stole second.
Westin Fabro grounded to short. Parrish threw to Fretheim at third to get Donahue. Pechloff got the next batter to ground out to end the inning.
Chandler took the lead in the bottom of the first when Parrish hit a two-run homer
Fretheim led off with a walk. Cody Bellinger reached on a fielder’s choice, forcing Fretheim. Parrish followed with a blast over the right field fence off Khade Paris to give Chandler National a 2-0 lead.
With one out in the second, Pechloff hit Iolana Akau with a pitch. Pechloff got the next two batters.
Chandler National threatened in the bottom of the second. Dalton Krum drew a one-out walk and went to second on a wild pitch. After nearly getting picked off at second, Krum took third on a wild pitch that was ball four to Fretheim, who took second on the play. But Paris escaped unscathed.
In the top of the third, Waipio got two runners on base. Donahue hit a one-out single. Ulumano Farm followed with an infield single. But Parrish fielded one up the middle, stepped on second and threw to Bellinger at first for an inning-ending double play.
Chandler added three runs in the bottom of the third.
Parrish opened the inning with a walk. Pechloff followed with a shot over the center field fence to make it 4-0.
One out later, James Ziegler hit a hot smash down the third base line for a single. Skyler Palermo and Dalton Krum walked, loading the bases. Reliever Troy Vicari’s first pitch was wild, and pinch runner Boston Whitlow scored. Vicari got the next two batters.
Waipio got on the board in the fourth. Paris led off the fourth with a walk. He went to second on a wild pitch. Pechloff walked Jordan Stevens and sent another one to the screen, and Paris took third. Pechloff struck out the next batter. Paris scored on a wild pitch. Chad Uyehara walked. Pechloff struck out the next two batters.
He struck out the next four batters he faced before being relieved in the sixth.
“I just try to compose myself,’’ he said. “I just tried to throw strikes, not do too much.”
Chandler answered with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Pechloff reached on an error and went to second. Haggerty followed with a hard grounder up the middle, scoring Pechloff.
Connor Woods hit a two-out single in the bottom of the fifth and Fretheim followed with an arching homer down the left field line to give Chandler an 8-1 lead.
After striking out the first batter in the sixth, Pechloff was relieved by Krum. Jake McCann made a diving catch in center to get the second out of the sixth. Palermo made a running catch in right field for the final out.