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Whidbey teams place in 11/12 tournament | Little League

Central Whidbey
Central Whidbey's Bryce Payne fires a pitch in the win over North Whidbey Friday.
— image credit: Jim Waller / Whidbey News-Times

Central Whidbey placed second and North Whidbey third in the 11/12 Little League District 11 tournament completed Saturday, July 6, in Sedro-Woolley.

Central Whidbey earned a slot in the title game by defeating North Whidbey 6-3 Friday.

Sedro-Woolley, which dominated the tournament, dashed Central Whidbey's title hopes with a 16-1 win in Saturday's championship game.

The closest game Sedro-Woolley had in the tournament was a 12-3 win over Central Whidbey Thursday. In that game, Jake Pease slugged a home run for one of the few Central Whidbey highlights.

JoJo Welling led the way in Central Whidbey's win over North Whidbey, going 3-for-3 with a home run and double.

Matt Hillborn was also 3-for-3 and ripped a double.

Shane Losey added two singles.

In Central Whidbey's loss in the title game, Pease again supplied the only offense highlight, smacking a double.

Central Whidbey coach Bob Brown said his team made more errors in the championship game than in the other four games combined.

He attributed the sloppy play to a team weary from traveling all week, especially from returning late Friday from the win over North Whidbey and leaving the next morning at 6:30 a.m. for the title game.

Nonetheless, it was an outstanding tournament for Central Whidbey, the smallest community in the tournament, Brown said. This was only the second or third time Central Whidbey has ever advanced to the title game in the 11/12 division, according to Brown.

He wasn't surprised by Central Whidbey success, though he was surprised that two of the top teams, South Whidbey and South Skagit, were eliminated early.

"I thought going in we had good chance to reach the title game," he said.

"Overall it was a really good series."

He lauded the pitching of Jered Brown and Bryce Payne and the hitting of Welling and Pease.

Central Whidbey fell just short of the title but did defeat island foes North and South Whidbey in its march to the title game.

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(North Whidbey's Thomas Anderson slides into third as Central Whidbey's Kyle Rockwell awaits the throw.)

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