Tuber, Northridge Sparkle : Little League: Pitcher throws one-hitter in 12-0 victory over Albuquerque in Western Regional.
The soft but clean single into right field hit by Nick Matthews of Albuquerque, N.M., ended foggy journeys down memory lane taken by several longtime officials Monday night at the Little League Western Regional Tournament for 11- and 12-year-olds.
Never, claimed Frank Yost, Frenchy Lebel and Tom Boyle, had a perfect game been pitched since regional play began here in 1971.
Meanwhile, on the mound stood Peter Tuber of Northridge, mowing down New Mexico hitters neatly and in order. Thirteen up, thirteen down until Matthews singled with one out in the fifth inning of the six-inning game.
The officials could simmer down and go back to watching the game along with the rest of the 4,500 fans. They saw Northridge defeat Albuquerque, 12-0, and advance to the semifinals against Taylorsville, Utah, tonight at 8. Northridge (15-0) and Utah are the only unbeaten teams in regional play.
The victory was the second of the tournament for Tuber, who defeated Alaska on Friday by allowing one hit in five innings. After his one-hitter against Albuquerque (8-1), Tuber has allowed two hits in 11 innings.
“I was thinking about (the perfect game) after the third inning,” said Tuber, a 5-foot-9 right-hander. “I wasn’t too happy with the hit, I hung a curve. But I loved my defense. They made all the plays.”
Most noteworthy was a sliding catch of a line drive by right fielder Spencer Gordon to open the fourth. Shortstop Matt Fisher and third baseman Gregg Wallis also turned in nice plays.
Although Tuber clearly is no small potatoes, the title of staff ace remains with Nathaniel Dunlap, who will get his first regional start tonight. Manager Larry Baca has used Dunlap as a one-inning closer in two games, but he said it is time to let the 5-11 right-hander work.
“You can see that we don’t take a step down with our other pitchers,” Baca said.
Wallis and Fisher each doubled and singled to lead Northridge’s 14-hit attack.