Doug MacKenzie confirmed Tuesday that he has been replaced as baseball coach at Canoga Park High. MacKenzie coached at the school for 37 years and led the Hunters to their first-ever City Section 4-A championship last season.
Horace Consolo, the Canoga Park junior varsity coach the past seven years, said he was selected Monday by Principal Charles Molina to replace MacKenzie.
Although MacKenzie, 61, retired as a health teacher April 28, he wished to be retained as coach on a walk-on basis. He is disturbed by the manner in which he was replaced.
"Naturally, I'm disappointed in not being able to coach the boys anymore, to defend the City championship," MacKenzie said. "But I'm also frustrated about the administrative process in which the decision was made.
"Just another lousy call by the umpire. Other than that, I have no comment."
Molina, who could not be reached Tuesday for comment, expressed a desire in May for all coaches to teach at the school.
"We would prefer not to use a walk-on coach," Molina had said.
Consolo, 56, has mixed feelings about taking the job MacKenzie held for so long.
"I don't like the feeling I have about this at all," said Consolo, who was varsity coach at L. A High from 1969-72. "Doug put in a lot of years. I feel awkward and I hope this doesn't create hard feelings."
MacKenzie's last season--and last game--at Canoga Park was his most successful. The Hunters were West Valley League champions and captured the City crown with a 5-4 win over Poly at Dodger Stadium.
In addition to being MacKenzie's first championship, the game marked MacKenzie's 300th career win against 298 losses.
MacKenzie, however, doesn't want to call it quits.
"I would love to coach someplace else," he said. "I already have two schools where I could go as head coach."