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After Many Switched Signals, Warriors Going to Pony Bowl

November 19, 1987|PAUL McLEOD

The football bowl fortunes of El Camino College have taken unusual twists over the past week.

The Warriors (9-0), who play host to Golden West College (5-3-1) on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in the season finale, are one of three teams to accept invitations to the Pony Bowl Classic, a revamped version of a single bowl game that was to be played Dec. 5 at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa.

Three weeks ago, despite its perfect record, El Camino was "sweating out a bowl invitation," according to Coach John Featherstone.

Under the new Pony Bowl format, officials are seeking four teams to play a double-header Dec. 5 at Orange Coast College.

Pony Bowl sponsors thought they had the four when they invited El Camino, Saddleback, Orange Coast and Taft, the state's No. 1 team. They announced second-ranked El Camino would play Taft if the Warriors defeated Golden West and that Orange Coast would meet Saddleback in a rematch of an earlier contest. But on Tuesday players at Orange Coast, which is tied with Saddleback for the Mission Conference lead, voted not to play if it meant a rematch with Saddleback.

So now bowl officials are looking for another team to invite. They say they will wait until the outcome of this weekend's final games before making a decision. They indicated that Orange Coast has not been discounted despite rejecting the earlier bid.

However, Golden West is considered the favorite should it beat El Camino. But if the Rustlers lose, Cerritos College could be the choice if it defeats Mt. San Antonio.

The confusion has everyone guessing.

Said Featherstone: "It's an uncomfortable situation. We should all be doing what is right for community college football and what is best for the kids who have busted their butts on the football fields all year."

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