Simi Valley High's Eric Hale, a Times second-team All-Ventura County selection on defense, has made an oral commitment to attend Oregon State on a football scholarship next fall.
In addition, Hueneme High's prized lineman Manny Perez will meet with University of Purdue coaches Saturday and will orally commit to the Big Ten Conference school if offered a scholarship, his high school coach said.
Hueneme Coach George Machado said Tuesday that Perez is a lock to receive a scholarship and will fly to Indiana on Saturday to meet with Coach Fred Akers.
"He's getting a full-ride, baby," Machado said. "He's going big time, Division I."
High school seniors can sign letters of intent starting Feb. 14.
Hale, who played quarterback and tailback, had 157 carries for 701 yards and seven touchdowns and completed 11 of 26 passes for 102 yards.
Although he was the Pioneers' top offensive player, Hale will concentrate on defense in college.
Hale, recruited as an outside linebacker, was offered trips to Brigham Young, Arizona State, San Diego State and Cal State Fullerton but canceled them after visiting Corvallis two weeks ago.
"The people and the coaches were a big part of my decision," Hale said. "I felt very comfortable there and everyone was very friendly."
Hale said he will redshirt his freshman year and hopes to make the Beavers' lineup as an outside linebacker in 1991.
"Their linebackers are pretty young," Hale said. "I think I have a good shot at playing my second year."
Failing to reach lofty goal: It seemed too good to be true and it was.
Within a week of Marion Jones' high school debut at the Sunkist Invitational track and field meet at The Sports Arena on Jan. 19., word began circulating that the 5-foot-8 1/2 Rio Mesa freshman could not only run like the wind, but also jump like Spud Webb.
Roger Lipkis, who coached Jones when she sprinted for the West Valley Eagles track club last summer, told a reporter after the Sunkist meet that Jones could dunk a basketball on a 10-foot rim, and that she could do it with two hands from beneath the hoop.
It is the stuff legends are made of, but, according to Rio Mesa co-Coach Brian FitzGerald, it's not true.
"She does have great leg strength," FitzGerald said. "But she can't dunk a basketball. She can touch a 10-foot rim, but there's a big difference between doing that and dunking. . . . Roger has a tendency to get a little carried away sometimes."
Add Jones: When five-time state sprint champion Angela Burnham graduated from Rio Mesa last June, Inger Miller of Pasadena Muir--who finished second to Burnham in the 100 and 200 in the state championships--figured to be the heir apparent to Burnham's throne.
Jones' performance at Sunkist, however, showed that Miller does not have a lock on this year's state titles.
Jones won the 50-meter dash in 6.53 seconds--to move to sixth on the all-time high school list--at Sunkist, and also ran the first leg on the Spartans' victorious 4 x 160-yard relay and the anchor leg on the winning 4 x 440 relay.
Her 57.7 anchor leg on the mile relay impressed FitzGerald more than the 50-meter time.
"I don't even know exactly what a 6.53 means to be honest with you," FitzGerald said. "But to run that fast (57.7) indoors this early in the season is really good. . . . She hasn't been training for the quarter."
So how does Jones compare to Burnham, now at UCLA?
"Angela is Angela, and Marion is Marion," FitzGerald said. "The only similarity is they run very fast. Their personalities are complete opposites. Marion is a real aggressive and gregarious kid. Angela was very shy and quiet as a freshman."
Eight is not enough: Oxnard High had only four players during the closing minutes of a 107-84 loss to Buena on Monday.
Oxnard began the Channel League game with eight players but lost guard Sef Sharpe to a twisted ankle in the first quarter.
Nazario Lopez, Quincy Johnson and Antonio Williams fouled out in succession in the fourth quarter leaving the Yellowjackets (1-9, 7-13) to play with four players during the last three minutes.
"What did you think of our box-and-none defense?," Oxnard Coach Dan Garcia asked Buena Coach Glen Hannah after the game.
Home sweet home: Before home games Wednesday against Bakersfield, the Moorpark men's and women's basketball teams had been on the road more than Willie Nelson.
The men played only six of their first 24 games at home, and the women were at home for a mere four of their first 22. Beginning with the Bakersfield games, though, each team will play five of its last seven regular-season games at Moorpark.
Both teams should make the state playoffs but hope to use their homestands as springboards to the Western State Conference title.
"The schedule definitely favors us right now," Moorpark women's Coach Gary Abraham said. "I think this is a really big week for us. The league is still kind of up in the air."
The Lady Raiders play three WSC games in six days and are coming off a difficult week in which they beat a tough Canyons team, 79-67, last Wednesday but lost to perennial power Valley, 79-49, last Saturday.
The men were not so fortunate. Canyons upset the Raiders, 108-87, last Wednesday, and Moorpark lost at league leader Valley, 83-80, on Saturday.
Eric Shepard and staff writers Brendan Healey and John Ortega contributed to this notebook.