A Pacoima baseball team was the first all-Black team to make it to the Little League World Series

The North Valley Broncos were the first all-Black baseball team from Pacoima to make it to Little League World Series in 1965.

Amanda Palacios Image
Thursday, February 10, 2022
All-Black Pacoima team made history in Little League World Series
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The North Valley Broncos were the first all-Black baseball team in Southern California to make it to the 1965 Little League World Series.

PACOIMA, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- During the '50s and '60s, little league baseball was an entirely different ball game. According to the Pacoima Historical Society, baseball teams in Pacoima and other parts of the San Fernando Valley were segregated.

"They didn't accept Black people," said President of the Pacoima Historical Society, Crystal Jackson.

It wasn't until 1963, a non-segregated league was created.

"The fathers said, 'You know, we got to get these kids doing something we got to get them to play,'" said Jackson.

The North Valley Broncos team started when a group of fathers got together and leased a plot of land near the Hansen Dam for $1 a month, so the kids had a field to practice on.

"They just got together and put together a winning team," said North Valley Broncos player Rickie Chapron.

The North Valley Broncos were part of the North Valley Little League. They made history as the first all-Black team from southern California to make it to the Little League World Series in 1965.

"We just prevailed and we couldn't stop winning," said Chapron.

USC Hall of Fame running back, Anthony Davis, was part of the North Valley Broncos. He said when the team traveled for games, they didn't always have a place to stay.

"We stayed in the gym, we slept on the floor and I found it being very rough as an almost 12-year-old kid," said Davis.

Chapron says many parents couldn't travel with them to away games because they couldn't afford to take time off from work. He recalls receiving a money order from his dad when he was in Massachusetts.

"He said, 'Hi Rickie, keep on winning call after game,'" said Chapron, showing the money order.

The team did not advance to the championship game, but being a part of history is something they say they'll never forget.

"Back then I said, 'You know what, this is going to make history isn't it by us being an all-Black team and being way out here,'" said Chapron.

"The legacy of us from the North Valley is very monumental ... it happened in little Pacoima, 15 miles out of Los Angeles, LA County, an all-Black team," said Davis

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