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Schools to Appeal Empire League Lineup : Athletics: Smaller schools concerned about being grouped with Esperanza and Mater Dei.


Five Orange County high schools will make appeals to the Southern Section league realignment committee today, Brea-Olinda Principal John Johnson said Tuesday.

The appeals involve the Empire League alignment, which would bring together Brea-Olinda, El Dorado, El Modena, Esperanza, Mater Dei and Santa Ana. The league alignments are for the 1994-95 school year.

Principals from Brea-Olinda, El Dorado, El Modena and Santa Ana will file a joint appeal to be removed from the same league as Esperanza and Mater Dei on grounds that the league realignment committee did not follow its criteria in creating the Empire League. Mater Dei will file an appeal on similar grounds.

The committee was to group teams according to location, competitive equity and enrollment.

Johnson said none of the four schools would be able to compete with Esperanza and Mater Dei. Brea-Olinda, El Dorado and El Modena are significantly smaller than Esperanza and Mater Dei.

Brea-Olinda has 1,413 students, El Dorado 1,450 and El Modena 1,580, according to the 1992-93 Southern Section Blue Book. Esperanza has 2,400 students and Mater Dei 2,100, according the Blue Book.

"As far as enrollment is concerned, we rank 49th in Orange County. Esperanza is eighth and Mater Dei 16th," Johnson said.

Johnson also said the smaller schools would not be able to compete with Esperanza and Mater Dei, especially in football. Esperanza was Southern Section Division II co-champions last season and Mater Dei was Division I champions in 1991.

"We were Division VI last season," Johnson said. "Does that mean we're going to jump five divisions? The way we see it, our best year in football will mean we finish third and open the playoffs at Fontana."

Johnson said he would like the section committee to consider the Orange County committee's second proposal, which would leave Mater Dei in the South Coast League and would place Esperanza in the Sunset League.

Mater Dei's concerns were more about geography. Principal Lyle Porter said the school will ask to switch places with Servite/Rosary and join the Sunset League.

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