Israel belts Great Britain, advances to World Baseball Classic

Five pitchers combined on a four-hitter and Israel slammed three home runs in a 9-1 victory over Great Britain in the championship game of the World Baseball Classic qualifier in Brooklyn, earning its first bid to the international tournament.
Israel took a no-hitter into the eighth inning in Sunday’s game at MUA Park on Coney Island, with starter Jason Marquis throwing four innings and striking out five and winning pitcher Josh Zeid the next three with three strikeouts.
Catcher Ryan Lavarnway had two hits, including a solo homer in a four-run fifth inning, and drove in three runs.
Israel advances to the World Baseball Classic, a quadrennial event modeled after soccer’s World Cup, and will play in South Korea in March. In 2012, Israel fell a game short of qualifying for the tournament.