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Little League boys make it to championship
Two South Whidbey Majors Little League teams are on the verge of being district All-Star champions and going to the state tournament.
After three South Whidbey Majors teams took championships in first-, second- and third-place tournaments late last month, coaches and players have put together two formidable squads of grade-school-age players.
In the 11-12-year tournament which includes teams from Whidbey Island, Snohomish and Skagit County the All-Star team lead by coach Tom Fallon has won five straight games in a 10-team pool to earn a showdown against a yet-unknown opponent Wednesday night in Burlington.
At the same time, an 11-year-old All-Star team from South Whidbey had won its first two games as of Tuesday and was set to take the tournament that evening against a Burlington team.
In what is becoming the best year ever for youth baseball and softball on South Whidbey, both teams have been dominant in their divisions. Fallons team started its tournament July 6 with a 4-1 victory over the North Whidbey All-Stars. Behind Hunter Rawls pitching, and helped by an Alex Nettleton-Rawls-TJ Fallon relay to home plate to stave off a North Whidbey run in the fourth inning, the south island boys laid first claim to the winners bracket.
On July 8, South Whidbey buried South Skagit 10-0 behind an Andrew Groves no hitter, then moved on to take down Sedro-Woolley 7-3 two days later. In that game Craig Hawkinson got his team started with a two-run homer in the first. South Whidbey won the game with four runs in the fifth, after Sedro-Woolley tied the game 3-3.
Another stellar pitching performances by Groves on Sunday propelled South Whidbey into the championship game, as the team took Central Whidbey 4-1. Groves allowed only one run on a leadoff homer, then settled in to fan 16 batters over six innings.
The team plays in the championship tonight at Skagit River Park in Burlington.
The 11-year-old South Whidbey team played its championship in Oak Harbor Tuesday night, after The South Whidbey Records press deadline. The teams scheduled opponent was Burlington.