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LITTLE LEAGUE BASEBALL

And then there were four in Majors TOC

Phillies, Red Sox showdown Tuesday
By: Joshua Gutierrez News Messenger Correspondent
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The final-four teams in the Local Tournament of Champions Majors Division have been set. The Phillies and Red Sox have battled back from early-tournament defeats, while the Giants and Yankees remained undefeated. On June 11, the first-place Giants played host to the surprising sixth-seeded Yankees. The Giants prevailed to give the Yanks (2-1) their first loss and send them into the elimination bracket. The SF team advances to the championship game to await the eventual challenger. In two playoff games, the Yanks? slugged the ball behind the bats of Cade Borgerson and Chad Bagwell. Combined, the two have hit six home runs in the tournament. ?They?re big kids nowadays,? Said Yankees? Manager Greg Borgerson, when asked about his team?s power. ?They can hit it the ball along ways.? The unlikely run for the TOC crown has come with wins against the second and third-seeded clubs. Even more unlikely, the club came in with a five-game losing streak and had a combined regular-season record of 0-6 against the two clubs they defeated in the tournament. Not to be outdone, the Giants showed the power of a first-place club that led the regular season in home runs. In their first game of the tournament against the Padres, the Giants knocked out six home runs in a four-inning contest. The club wasted no time in displaying their power after a bye week. Nick Pereira, Preston Eklund and Zach Eutsey each homered in the first inning. Remarkably the trio did so in a seven-pitch sequence that resulted in back-to-back-to-back solo shots. With an 11-3 lead and a runner on base, an unlikely player coming off the bench displayed power. On a 1-2 count, pinch-hitter Blake Christopherson belted a two-run home run to capture the win. ?I like to hit.? said Giants Manager Mario Pereira. ?We hit the ball hard, that?s what we want to do ? and that?s what we did.? The Phils? and Sox have taken similar paths in this TOC; both suffered a loss to the Yankees and both have bounced back with strong wins. This is no surprise, for the two teams shared an identical record coming into the regular-season finale against one another. The Beantowners took that game for second place in the standings. It was reported that the Red Sox defeated the Phils 3-1 in Tuesday?s game, eliminating Philly. The Giants will await the winner of the Yankees vs. Red Sox. The second-chance game will be between two one-loss teams on June 13. The winner will be the visiting team in the championship game. As a note, if the Giants win the TOC, the Red Sox will get an automatic bid to the District 11 TOC as Lincoln?s ?B? team. The Giants will go in as the ?A? team having the best regular-season record in the Majors. Lincoln Little League Majors TOC The Final Four Giants 2-0 (first round bye), win over Padres and Yankees Yankees 2-1, wins over Phillies and Red Sox, loss to Giants Red Sox 1-1, loss to Yankees, win over Rangers Phillies 1-2, loss to Yankees and Red Sox, win over Padres Elimination Game Red Sox 3, Phillies 0