2021 U12 European Championship: Belgium Wins First Game

Last but not least. Belgium played in the last game of the opening day of the tournament. The mini Red Hawks faced Lithuania that was no match for Germany earlier on the day as it lost 15-0 in four innings. Unlike the Germans, the Red Hawks had to go a lot deeper to clinch the win.

No big innings for Belgium as the team garnered its runs. A stolen home plate by Aaron Sluys in the first, a 4-3 groundout by Emile Seynave-Vroman in the second, and a triple to left center field by Owen Adams in the third inning gave Belgium a 3-0 lead.

BEL flag

But Lithuania had one offensive outburst that turned the tables in the bottom of the third inning. An RBI single, a 4-3 groundout , an RBI-triple, an RBI-double, and a wild pitch allowed Lithuania to score five runs.

But Belgium would bounce back in the following inning. Lars Verbeken led off the inning with a single and advanced to second and third on two wild pitches. Control was quite an issue for the Lithuanian pitcher as he threw a wild pitch in the following at-bat. But Oscar Delory singled home Lars Verbeken before Mil de Quint sacrificed by laying down a bunt to put runners in scoring position. Aaron Sluys then helped his own case as he was pitcher at the time, and singled to drive in Oscar Delory for the game-tying run.

Belgium kept pushing in the fifth inning as well. Lars Verbeken tripled home Niels Frijns and Verbeken himself could score on a fielding error by the Lithuanian first baseman when Oscar Delory “hit” towards first base.

LTU flag

Aaron Sluys earned the win. He pitched three innings no-hit innings in which he walked one and struck out four. Augustas Jansonas took the loss after 4.1 innings in which he allowed six runs on eight hits and two walks and struck out three.

Lars Verbeken was the best hitter for Belgium as he went 3 for 3 with a home run shy of the cycle. He drove in one run and scored thrice.

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