New Jersey team beats Rhode Island 2-0 in the Little League World Series

WILLIAMSPORT, Pennsylvania (WABC) -- New Jersey took the next step in the Little League World Series Tuesday night with a 2-0 win over the team from Rhode Island.

The Elmora Troopers, from Elizabeth, broke a scoreless tie by pushing across two runs in the top of the sixth inning, and their pitchers held Rhode Island to just one hit.

They now move on to play River Ridge, Lousiana at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

The Troopers won in the Mid-Atlantic region to reach the Little League World Series and defeated Oregon in the opening game, 6-2, before losing to Hawaii 6-0 in the double-elimination tournament.

The Elmora Youth League team is named in honor of Thomas Hanratty, a state trooper who was struck by a passing vehicle and killed while walking back to his car during a traffic stop in 1992.

Hanratty played baseball for Elmora, and ever since his death, the league has honored him by nicknaming themselves "the Troopers" and wearing a patch with Hanratty's badge number, 4971, on their uniforms.

Before the team's first game of the tournament Friday, the players were surprised by a few state police troopers and about eight busloads of fans from Elizabeth.
"Honestly, as a grown man, it was emotional," New Jersey manager Jairo Labrador said. "Because I know what it signifies and what it means to us and our league and what it represents."

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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