Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Little League Team Loses U.S. Title Chicago Used Players Last Year from beyond Team's Geographic Boundaries

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Little League Team Loses U.S. Title Chicago Used Players Last Year from beyond Team's Geographic Boundaries

Article excerpt

CHICAGO -- Little League International stripped Chicago's Jackie Robinson West Little League team of its U.S. title Wednesday after it determined the team knowingly used ineligible players from outside of approved geographic boundaries.

The title will be awarded to the team from Las Vegas that Jackie Robinson West defeated in the U.S. championship game. The Jackie Robinson team also must vacate all wins from the 2014 Little League World Series tournament, including their Great Lakes regional title.

The Little League organization said that "after an extensive review," it determined that the team "knowingly violated Little League International rules and regulations by placing players on their team who did not qualify to play because they lived outside the team's boundaries. Little League International found that Jackie Robinson West Little League used a falsified boundary map for their 2014 tournament."

In addition to voiding all the team's wins, manager Darold Butler has been suspended from Little League and Michael Kelly has been removed as administrator of Illinois District 4.

The organization said the team "has been placed on probation, with its tournament privileges suspended, until such a time that new leadership have been elected or appointed, and that the league is fully compliant with all Little League International Regulations."

One parent. Nedra Jones, said her son feels he "did something wrong. I know what they did and what they came from.

"Actually, I'm upset and disappointed because now my son has the mad face because he feels like he did something wrong and he didn't."

Venisa Green, mother of Jackie Robinson West player Brandon Green, said she found out about the team's title being revoked on the morning news. Green said she "can't even imagine that this has happened." She said she wondered if the team's title would've been questioned if the kids weren't African-American. …

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