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Utah falls 11-2 in Little League World Series opener

Posted at 1:02 PM, Aug 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-19 19:49:47-04

WILLIAMSPORT, Penn. — After a tough week in which a teammate was severely injured, the Utah baseball team dropped its opening game of the Little League World Series.

The team from the Snow Canyon Little League representing the Mountain Region faced off against the Nolensville, Tennessee team from the Southeast Region in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

It's the first time a team from Utah has ever played in the Little League World Series.

Utah player Easton Oliverson was injured Sunday night after he fell out of his bunk bed. The 12-year-old is recovering in the hospital and his younger brother has taken his spot on the team.

3:22 p.m.

Colton Gainey flied out to end the game. Tennessee wins 11-2, but it's a double-elimination tournament. Utah will play again Sunday morning at 9 a.m. MST.

Tennessee 11 Utah 2 - Final

3:06 p.m.

Brogan Oliverson, Easton's 10-year-old brother, receives a standing ovation from the crowd as he came to bat in the fifth inning. He struck out, but received another standing ovation when he returned to the dugout.

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2:52 p.m.

During a visit to the mound, Utah coach Kyle Hafen sums up the game perfectly, telling his players, "Oh, man. This sucks sometimes, huh?"

Tennessee 11 Utah 2 - Middle of the fifth inning

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2:46 p.m.

FOX 13 News reporter Mythili Gubbi is in St. George at a watch party with friends and family. She'll have more from the party on the FOX 13 News at Four and Five.

Watch Party Video

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2:43 p.m.

Tennessee goes up 8-2 in the fifth inning when two runs score on a passed ball.

Another passed ball allowed yet another Tennessee runner to score to give them a 9-2 lead.

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2:30 p.m.

Utah finally gets another run on a double steal as Reggie Ence scores from third, while Brogan Coop ends up on second. Tennessee still leads 6-2 in the bottom of the fourth inning.

Tennessee 6 Utah 2 - end of the fourth inning

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2:29 p.m.

Gov. Spencer Cox cheered on the team through Twitter.

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2:11 p.m.

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1:54 p.m.

ESPN shows Easton's No. 16 jersey hanging in the Utah dugout.

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1:45 p.m.

A passed ball allows another Tennessee run to score and make it 6-1 in the top of the second inning.

Tennessee 6 Utah 1 - Middle of the second inning

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1:35 p.m.

Josiah Porter puts Utah on the board with a double to centerfield, scoring Ence from second base.

Tennessee 4 Utah 1 - End of the first inning

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1:34 p.m.

Reggie Ence hits a single to left field. It's the first-ever hit for a Utah team in the Little League World Series.

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1:19 p.m

Tennessee takes an early first inning 1-0 lead after drawing a bases loaded walk. That was followed by a 2-run double by Nash Carter that barely stayed fair, giving Tennessee a 3-0 lead.

The Tennessee lead increased to 4-0 after a bases loaded sacrifice fly to centerfield.

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1:04 p.m.

At the start of the ESPN game broadcast, commentators spoke of Easton's story before speaking with his father, Jace, and little brother, Brogan.

When asked what he'd say to his brother, Brogan simply replied, "Go Tank!"

Snow Canyon teammates placed Easton's glove and hat on the field during batting practice, and his face was shown on the scoreboard.

Easton Oliverson Scoreboard
Easton Oliverson featured on the scoreboard at the Little League World Series

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12:50 p.m.

Easton Oliverson father
Jace Oliverson, center, father of Little Leaguer Easton Oliverson who was injured, holds Easton's medal, with another son, Brogan Oliverson (6) at his side, taking Easton's place on the championship team from Santa Clara, Utah before a baseball game against Nolensville, Tenn., at the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pa., Friday, Aug. 19, 2022.

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12:32 p.m.

The Little League World Series shared video of how the Snow Canyon squad made it to Williamsport.

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12:30 p.m.

Just before game time, a video was released showing Easton taking steps with help from hospital staff on Friday. (Video courtesy of the Easton Oliverson Facebook page)

Easton walking on Friday

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11:00 a.m.