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West University wins senior league world championship

John Doxakis delivers a pitch during a semifinal victory over Bangor on Friday
Anthony DelMonaco

BANGOR-- Joe Gobillot feels right at home when he visits Maine.

He pitched like he was at home in leading West University L.L.from Houston, Texas to a 7-4 victory over Pariba L.L., from Willemstad, Curacao in the Senior League world championship game on Saturday afternoon at Mansfield stadium.

Gobillot's grandfather has a home about 70 miles from Mansfield stadium on Belgrade lakes.

Gobillot and his family come to Maine yearly to visit "Grandpa Bob". Gobillot brought his teammates for a visit on their off day at the Senior League World Series on Wednesday.

"It was a lot of fun. I knew this field was like 45 minutes away from my grandpas house on Belgrade lakes,"Gobillot said. "On our day off we just hung out and went fishing and stuff."

West University took a quick 2-0 lead. Gobillot retired Pariba in order during the top of the first inning. Jimmy Winston hit a one out single to start a rally in the bottom of the first. Carson Maxwell got hit by a pitch, John Doxakis followed by drilling the first pitch to deep left center field to score Winston and Maxwell.

"He started off our three hole (Maxwell) with a fastball, "Doxakis said. "I was thinking that maybe he thought we were the same hitter. I was looking for a fastball, I got it middle in and I hit it."

Pariba took advantage of two walks, and two wild pitches to score one run during the top of the second inning. West University limited the damage when Turner Gaunit threw out Zaino Henriquez attempting to steal.

Gobillot said, "I took a step off, if innings start going like that I just look at the American flag and I just got my composure back."

Winston and Jacob Millender each had a run scoring single as West University exploded to score four runs in the bottom of the second inning. They took advantage of a Pariba error.

With a five run lead, Gobillot cruised through the middle innings. He retired eight straight batters that extended through the end of the fifth inning.

"My two seam was working pretty well. I was painting the outside corner with that, it was really important to set up my other pitchers as well,"Gobillot said. "My curve ball and change up were working very well. The defense was also playing very well behind me."

West scored their fourth unearned run of the game and extended the lead to 7-1 in the fourth inning when Maxwell started the inning with a single and came around to score.

Gobillot was removed from the mound after giving up two singles and a walk in the top of the sixth inning. Winston came in and struck out Swindley Lint for the second out of the inning. Henriquez followed with a two run bloop hit that landed between the shortstop, third baseman, and left fielder.

Winston struck out Nathanel Makaya to end the sixth inning, and retired the side in order to finish it off. Winston struck out Raysheandall Michel to end the game and send West University back to Houston with the world championship.

"It was kind of nerve wracking, but I wanted to close the game,"Winston said. "Joe (Gobillot) did a great job and was hoping he would go the whole game too, at the same time I had a good time going in and was very excited."

West University has made it a tradition to make the trip to Bangor in August. This was their fourth trip to the SLWS since 2009. They also made the trip in 2009, 2010, and 2012. They won the world championship in 2009.

"That was our goal from day one, not to just get here, but to win it,"West University manager Clint Sauls said. "That is the way our guys have played all summer. The moment is not too big, it is just like any other game they have ever played."

The team from Houston, Texas had outscored their opponents 57-5 in there six games (three in the southwest regional and three in world series pool play) before they fell 4-2 to Pariba in their final game of pool play on Thursday evening.

"They (Pariba) were the only team to beat us all summer,"Sauls said. "We wanted another crack at those guys. We didn't take the easy route, we had to go through those guys to win."

West University (5-1) outscored their opponents 43-11 in World Series play.

Winston, Doxakis, and Jacob Millender recorded two hits each for West University. Winston ended up striking out 10 in 4.1 innings pitched at the World Series.

Mairion Brunken took the loss on the mound for Pariba. Brunken allowed seven runs/three earned in 5.1 innings pitched. He allowed seven hits and one walk while striking out six.