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Eight Estancia Soccer Players Are Suspended for Drinking

September 19, 1996

COSTA MESA — Eight Estancia girls' soccer players were suspended by the school because they consumed alcohol while at a summer soccer tournament in Santa Barbara, Athletic Director Tim Parsel said Wednesday.

Parsel said the eight students were dismissed under the school district's zero-tolerance policy. Five students already have transferred to another Newport-Mesa District high school and the other three will transfer in the coming weeks, Parsel said.

According to The Daily Pilot, the district still is investigating the incident, in which some of the girls consumed alcohol in their hotel rooms at the tournament last July.

Estancia Coach Jenny Tavares, along with two other coaches who were there also are being investigated by the district, the report said. The students and coaches were in the same hotel.

Parsel said he had two of the students in one of his classes. Both were on the varsity team, and neither one has been in school since Tuesday.

Although some of the students' parents have complained about the suspension, calling it too harsh a penalty, Parsel said the school's zero-tolerance policy is as well known as the consequences.

"It's [the policy] posted in every classroom in the school," Parsel said. "For the athletes, there's a handbook that is given out that states the policy, and parents and athletes are supposed to sign a card which states that they have read it [the policy]."

Parcel said the school is serious about this policy, which has enforced before.

Said Parcel: "We've had some very good athletes affected by this rule. It's nothing new."

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