When Visalia Cubs pitcher Derek VanGrouw opened the game by striking out two of the first three batters he faced he really put the pressure on his counterpart, and cousin Lance VanGrouw.

Lance, pitching for the Exeter Cubs, responded by allowing just one hit in the bottom half of the first inning of the first round game of the Tournament of Champions on June 18 at Dobson Field.

In the second inning Exeter would threaten for the first and last time getting a leadoff walk to Justin Griffe and the team's only hit off the bat of Chris Lee. After a Derek VanGrouw walk to load the bases, Griffe scored Exeter's only run on a passed ball.

Visalia got on the board with two runs in the third inning and would eventually win by the score of 4-1.

Lance pitched five innings allowed four hits and struck out two in the loss. Derek pitched three innings, struck out six and allowed just one hit. Blake Proctor entered the game in the fourth inning for Visalia and struck out eight in three innings.

Visalia Cubs met Porterville in the championship game on June 19 and ran away with the title in an 18-1 rout.

The District 34 Little League All Star tournament starts with the 9-10-year-old age group on June 28 in Tulare.

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