Championship Little League teams inspiring young Hawaii players - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Championship Little League teams inspiring young Hawaii players

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Justice Nakagawa Justice Nakagawa
The Waipio Majors All Stars practice field The Waipio Majors All Stars practice field
Sharks baseball team members Sharks baseball team members
Members of the Silver Dogs Members of the Silver Dogs
Stephen Masuhara Stephen Masuhara

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

WAIPIO (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii's Little League champs smacked ten hits on Thursday in Pennsylvania to keep them in the hunt for another World Series title.

A three-run homer by Justice Nakagawa helped Waipio beat Georgia, the team that beat Waipio Saturday to stay undefeated. 

Now we're all tied up, and Hawaii fans are pumped up.

The victory prompted big cheers at the Big City Diner in Waipio. Friends and family took the day off at work to catch the All Stars in action.

That victory buzz continued into the night, especially among Little Leaguers who hope to one day walk in Waipio's shoes, or cleats in this case.

The Waipio Majors All Stars practice field is clearly marked with pride, with sign that reads 'Home Park of the 2008 World Champions Waipio Little League'.

Just hours after Waipio's win against Georgia, the Little League's younger players took to their home park, the Silver Dogs and the Sharks, inspired.

"So you want to be in the World Series too?"

"Yes!" said some Sharks baseball players.

The Waipio Little League was born 25 years ago, and clearly, all the hard work and heart that has played out on this field over time has paid off.

This is the third time in Waipio's history the Little Leaguers have made it to the World Series.

And who could forget their shining moment when Waipio was thrust into the national spotlight as they snatched the 2008 World Series crown.

Among those in the stands were Trevor Ling and Christian Donahou's younger brothers, both in the league as well.

"It was exciting when they played Mexico," said Ling's younger brother, Chase.

"No, Louisiana," said Donahou's little brother, Jordan.

"Wasn't Mexico in the championship?" said Ling.

"Yeah, but Louisiana was better," said Donahou.

Fast forward to 2010, where baseball fever is running high once again and it's triggered a growth spurt.

"Back in 1992, we only had three teams at this level, and now we're up to five, and we may have to increase to six or seven teams," said Stephen Masuhara, President of the Waipio Little League.

It's a domino effect that may mean more potential world champions, right in Hawaii's backyard.

"We wish them luck and we hope that they win the World Series!" said the Silver Dogs.

Even if Waipio doesn't come home with the World Series title, after winning the Regional's, they still have bragging rights as being the 'Best in the West'.

More about this story on HawaiiNewsNow.com:

Hawaii defeats Georgia 7-4 to stay alive in Little League World Series

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