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NOTEBOOK : Show Must Go On So Meet Is Off

November 06, 1994|KIRBY LEE | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Cross-country met country music head on, and the music won.

Greek Theatre officials cut short a cross-country meet at Griffith Park involving Southeastern and Northern Conference schools Oct. 21 because of a Brooks & Dunn concert later that night.

Cross-country races start and finish on a grassy field next to the Greek Theatre that is also used for parking for theater events.

Most of the races had been run when officials halted the meet at 4 p.m. for the 7:30 p.m. concert despite protests from coaches to allow the remaining four races to be combined into one race.

When it was discovered the City Section had no permit to use the field, Greek Theatre officials called in park rangers to escort the teams back to their buses.

"Instead of arguing forever, they could have run the race and everybody could have been out of there in 15 minutes," Belmont Coach Alex Carmona said. "It's not like we were in the way. People weren't even going to start coming in for at least another hour."

The incident marked the first time in 13 years a conflict had arisen involving use of the field. City Section commissioner Barbara Fiege said park permits were not required until three years ago, but the section wasn't aware of the change.

Fiege said a permit has since been obtained from the Parks and Recreation Dept. but said there are no other conflicts between cross-country races and the Greek Theatre events this fall.

"We had never been asked for a permit before," Fiege said. "There was some heated discussion, but without a permit we had no leg to stand on. We had no choice but to stop the meet."

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Five of a kind--The Cal State Los Angeles women's cross-country team swept the first five places in the California Collegiate Athletic Assn. championships in San Diego on Oct. 29.

The conference title was the first in school history for Cal State L.A., which became the only school besides Cal Poly San Luis Obispo to win the women's CCAA title. Cal Poly SLO had won all 13 conference titles before moving to NCAA Division I this fall.

Marisa Avendano of Cal State L.A. was the individual winner, touring the 5,000-meter Balboa Park course in 17 minutes 33 seconds.

Marisol Cossio (17:57), Martha Pinto (18:10), Mary Ann Martinez (19:03) and Marisol Pedraza (19:05) rounded out the scoring in second through fifth for the Golden Eagles, who totaled a perfect 15 points.

Cal State L.A.'s combined team time of 1:31:56 was more than eight minutes faster than runner-up Grand Canyon (1:40:02), which finished second with 73 points. UC San Diego and Cal Poly Pomona were third and fourth with 84 and 86 points.

Jorge Perea, the 1992 City champion from Huntington Park, was 10th in the men's 8,000-meter race in 26:26 for Cal State L.A., which finished fifth in the team's competition.

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Names in the news--Ronnie Arch of Crenshaw and Johnnie Sanders of Franklin were among the preseason top 50 basketball players on the West Coast chosen by Student Sports magazine. Arch, a 6-foot-5 guard, helped Crenshaw to its second consecutive State Division I title last season. Sanders, a two-time All-City 3-A selection, averaged 26 points as a junior.

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Grass roots--If the grass at East Los Angeles College looked unseasonably green for Friday night's football game between Garfield and Roosevelt, it was no illusion. The field was painted earlier in the week.

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