Paderborn, Germany, became the second team to qualify for this year’s Pony League World Series, by winning the European Zone Tournament in Prague, Czech Republic.
Paderborn was 4-0 in pool play, defeating Belgrade, Serbia, 25-4; Porici, Czech Republic, 26-2; Prague, Czech Republic 11-1 and Trebic, Czech Republic 18-0. In medal round play, Paderborn defeated Stuttgart, Germany 12-3 in the semifinal and Vilnius, Lithuiana 3-2 in the final.
Against the hard throwing Lithuanian pitcher Paderborn catcher Maurice Bendrien had a triple and was squeezed in by Alex Schmidt for the winning run. “The boys fought hard against a physically superior team and what was remarkable is that two of the three runs scored came by the way of squeeze play,” stated Paderborn manager Georg Bull. “The final was a pitching duel basically with starting pitcher Niklas Rimmel doing a fine job (later MVP of the tournament) but it was also reliever Jan Endrejat who shut the door with 4 K´s in 4 IP when the Lithuanian tried to come back .”
Prague hosted the 2013 Pony League (14U) European Zone tournament for the twelfth year in a row. This year the European Zone tournament featured seventeen (17) teams from Germany, Lithuania, Russia, Bulgaria, England, Israel, Poland, Serbia, Romania and Belarus. Paderborn, Germany returns to the Pony League World Series for the second year in a row.
“We are honored to represent Europe in the 2013 Pony League World Series,” stated German manager Georg Bull. “Last year we were not able to fulfill our obligations to the Pony League World Series by leaving early and we really wanted to return to show our appreciation to PONY. We look forward to returning to the birthplace of PONY and play to the best of our ability.”
Paderborn, Germany will face host Washington, Pennsylvania in their first game Saturday, Aug. 10 at 5:30 p.m.