BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- Entering this year's Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities World Series, Philadelphia junior baseball coach Mike Mallon wasn't going to change anything.
After all, Philadelphia had just won the Mid-Atlantic region to reach the RBI World Series in Minnesota.
"We really haven't changed our approach," Mallon said. "We tell them the same thing every day, 'Play for each other and play to win.' It's been our motto since Day 1."
It's been working for Philadelphia, which earned the No. 1 seed on the East side of the pool for Saturday's playoffs after going 3-0 in the first two days of round-robin play. There's a reason Philadelphia's approach has worked. It boils down to teamwork, an aspect featured by the select few teams that reach the RBI World Series.
"These guys are tight," Mallon said. "Everybody's got each other's backs. If somebody's down, they pick them up. It's really been a successful season on many levels."
Philadelphia beat Jersey City, 10-6, in its first game on Friday and came back in the evening with a 5-3 win against previously unbeaten Atlanta. As the East's top seed in the junior tournament, Philadelphia (3-0) will face Houston (0-3) in the first round of Saturday's playoffs.
Los Angeles (3-0) earned the top seed from the West junior pool with a 10-7 win against the Chicago White Sox and an 8-5 win over the Dominican Republic. Los Angeles will open the playoffs against Detroit (0-3).
"Everyone knows how the format is set up," Los Angeles coach Shannon Williams said about Friday's games. "Everyone is kind of jockeying, positioning themselves to put them in play for playoffs. You can win all three of these games or lose all three of your pool-play games, and when the playoff time comes, that's when you put your best ticket forward."
Atlanta (2-1) is the second seed from the East and will play the Chicago junior team (1-2) on Saturday. Atlanta beat Detroit, 9-5, before losing to Philadelphia.
"I tell them, 'It's OK to win today, but Saturday's the main day,'" Atlanta coach John Floyd said. "I just want to play good ball until we get to Saturday. Saturday's when it really counts. We can go 4-0 or 3-0; if we lose the first game Saturday, then it all went for naught."
The Dominicans lost to Los Angeles, but recovered to beat Houston, 12-0. The Dominican Republic (2-1) will face Jersey City (1-2) on Saturday.
In Friday's other games, Chicago beat Houston, 18-4, and Jersey City earned its first win with a 4-1 victory against Detroit.
Philadelphia wasn't the only team working together on Friday, especially in the junior bracket. With comeback wins being posted in each of the afternoon's two contests, teams needed to stay together and be resilient.
Atlanta trailed, 3-0, entering the sixth inning before rallying for six runs in the sixth and three more in the seventh to pull out the victory.
"They keep fighting to the end," Floyd said of his players. "We're going to keep fighting until blue crosses his arms.
"They always stay in the game. No matter what, still have fun and have a good time. You win some and you lose some. Have fun and keep fighting. I talk about it all the time, always keep your head up."
Keep fighting is just what Los Angeles did to beat the defending champion Dominican team.
Los Angeles trailed early after a first-inning, three-run home run by the Dominican's Gustavo Cabrera. But slowly, L.A. crept back and tied the score at 3 in the fourth.
However, the Dominicans took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth. Los Angeles again countered to tie the game in the fifth before D.R. took a 5-4 lead.
Los Angeles then loaded the bases with one out in the sixth, but couldn't score a run. It then scored four in its last at-bat to earn the win.
"Pretty much all summer, that's what our guys have been doing, just responding and playing the situations," Williams said. "We responded late. It showed the character of our guys."
In the senior division, Tampa and Venezuela each earned the top seeds in their respective pools.
Tampa beat Harrisburg, 15-3, on Friday to take the top spot in the East. Tampa (3-0) will face Chicago (0-2-1) in Saturday's playoffs.
Venezuela added an 8-3 win against defending champion Houston to earn the West pool's No. 1 seed. Venezuela (3-0) will play Cleveland (0-2-1) in Saturday's quarterfinals. Friday's other pool-play games each ended in ties. Venice, Calif., and the Chicago Cubs tied 3-3, while Cleveland and Jersey City played to a 5-5 tie.
Venice (1-1-1) took the second seed in the West and will face Jersey City (0-1-2) in the first round of the playoffs Saturday.
Harrisburg (1-1-1) will play Houston (1-2) in the quarterfinals.
Brian Hall is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.