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Rules Violation Knocks Legion Team From Playoffs

July 20, 1986|DARRYL MAXIE

Reseda-Cleveland, which qualified for the American Legion District 20 playoffs with a second-place finish in the Mid Division, has been disqualified from postseason play for using an ineligible player, District Commissioner Mel Swerdling said Saturday.

Encino South filed a protest against Reseda-Cleveland and will replace the team in the playoffs, which begin Thursday at Birmingham High. Reseda-Cleveland defeated Encino South, 7-2, Saturday on the final day of the regular season to post an 11-9 record. But the team's forfeiture of games because of the ineligible player sends Encino South (9-12) into the playoffs.

Legion rules state that a team can accept players from as many schools as it wants, as long as the combined enrollment of sophomores, juniors and seniors from those schools does not exceed 3,600.

Swerdling said Encino South's protest, filed "several days ago," charged that Reseda-Cleveland used a player from El Camino Real High without adding that school's enrollment to those of Canoga Park and Cleveland--the two other schools from which Reseda-Cleveland takes its players.

Swerdling refused to identify the El Camino Real player, but Reseda-Cleveland Coach Marty Siegel said it was catcher Jimmy Wolf.

Siegel's assistant coach, Jerry Holiday, charged that his team was unfairly singled out, saying other teams also exceed the limit. "They can't beat us on the field so this is what they did to us," he said hours after Reseda-Cleveland defeated Encino South.

Encino South Coach Craig Sherwood was unavailable for comment.

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