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1970s / Little League WS Bans Foreign Teams - 1975
If you can't beat 'em--ban 'em! The Little League World Series became a truly international event in the mid-1960s. Teams from Asia and Central America began travelling to South Wiliamsport, PA to compete against the best American teams. Embarrassingly for the Americans, the foreigners began to win regularly. So, of course, the only logical thing to do was to ban the foreigners! At the 1975 LLWS, only four teams competed--all regional champions from the U.S. Lakewood, New Jersey defeated the Belmont Heights Little League of Tampa, Florida in the championship game on August 23. This was the only LLWS in which Little League banned all non-US clubs from the tournament. After a justifiable uproar of criticism, the ban on foreign teams was rescinded the following year. An American team did not win the LLWS again until 1982. Below is a photo from the 1975 tourney, showing Wilbert Davis of Tampa scoring a run. Davis was killed in action in Iraq in 2003.