Who ever thought the city of Chula Vista would become a town known around the nation?

The Park View Little League team from Chula Vista assured that the city would have a national profile by winning the Little League World Series title on Sunday with a 6-3 comeback victory over a team from Taiwan (or Chinese Taipei if you fear repercussions from the Chinese government).

The team nicknamed “The Blue Bombers” won the game without hitting a home run after booming 19 dingers over the previous five games. Chula Vista’s first three runs scored on an error, a sacrifice fly and a wild pitch.

Bulla Graft’s RBI-single in the fourth inning gave Chula Vista a 4-3 lead and the squad tacked on two insurance runs in the fifth.

The biggest play of the game came with Taiwan batting in the top of the fifth with the bases loaded and one out. Chula Vista shortstop Andy Rios fielded a grounder hit by Chin Ou and tagged the runner heading towards third base and then threw to first for an inning-ending double play.

Kiko Garcia finished off a fine relief appearance (he didn’t allow a hit after entering in the third inning with Taiwan up 3-0) by striking out Yu Chieh Kao to set off a spirited celebration as Chula Vista Park View became just the second team from San Diego County (El Cajon-La Mesa Northern Little League in 1961 is the other) to win a Little League World Series title.

In fact, Chula Vista manager Oscar Castro had a postgame comment that certainly describes San Diego’s poor history at winning championships.

“It seems San Diego comes so close all the time. The Padres come close and don’t win. The Chargers come close and don’t win,” Castro said. “It was nice to do it for the city.”

These youngsters will certainly be honored by Chula Vista residents and remembered for years to come. For the majority of the players, the title will turn out to be their biggest sports accomplishment.

Perhaps face of the team Luke Ramirez — what does his family feed him to make him stand 6-foot-2, 212 pounds at such a young age? — or a few of the other players will develop into high school players and we will hear about them again someday.

But no matter what happens in their lives, these kids will be revered in Chula Vista for the rest of their lives.

To put it simply, Chula Vista is no longer just a place you pass by on your way to Mexico or a town the San Diego Chargers have flirted with in their desperate search for a new football stadium.

The town of Chula Vista is now officially on the map — because of these victorious kids.


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