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Six Teams to Watch : Canyon

March 07, 1995

Coach: Mike Najera (third year)

1994: 22-6, 13-2 in the Century League. Lost to Temecula Valley, 5-2, in Division II quarterfinals.

Key returners: Chad Baum, C, Sr.; Darren Chandler, OF, Sr.; Bobby Fry, 2B, Jr.; Greg Jacobs, P/OF, Sr.; Troy Mills, 3B, Jr.; Scott Redfox, P/SS, Sr.; David Takehara, P, Sr.; Eric Valent, OF, Sr.

Key newcomers: Joo-Jin Back, OF, Jr.; Jeff Fraser, C, Jr.; Jeff Leuenberger, P/Inf., So.; Matt Pieper, OF, Sr.; Mike Tomarelli, Inf./P, So.

Outlook: Not many teams could lose three .400 hitters and still be considered the league favorite, but last season the Comanches were loaded with juniors. They form the nucleus of another strong offense. Valent (who signed with UCLA) is the best of the bunch. He hit .426 with six home runs and 36 RBIs. He has plenty of support in Chandler (.411), Redfox (.403) and Jacobs (.405). But the Comanches don't have the power they had last year, so expect more running. The pitching is solid. Jacobs was 7-0 and Redfox was a good spot starter. Leuenberger was the junior varsity's MVP last season.

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