Spring Training

It's a 'once-in-a-lifetime' experience for Rancho Santa Margarita team in reaching Little League World Series

It's a 'once-in-a-lifetime' experience for Rancho Santa Margarita team in reaching Little League World Series

Jonas Novek turned 13 on Thursday. Normally birthdays mean a fishing trip or a visit to the beach.

“Anything to do with the water,” his mother Holly says.

But this year those plans were canceled because the Rancho Santa Margarita baseball team Jonas plays for qualified for the Little League World Series and a trip to central Pennsylvania, more than 200 miles from the nearest coast.

It was the best present he could have received.

“What a way to turn into a teenager,” his father Jim said. “Win or lose, it’s just a fabulous experience.”

A lengthy one too. When Rancho opens World Series play Friday against Walla Walla, Wash., it will mark the team’s fifth...

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