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Southern Section Tries to Sort Out Footbrawl

November 13, 1996

A bench-clearing brawl between members of the Kilpatrick and Maranatha high school football teams last Saturday at San Marino High is still under investigation after an all-day meeting Tuesday between Southern Section officials and administrators from both schools.

"We will know more by [today] and we will have a statement," Southern Section Assistant Commissioner Bill Clark said.

The five-minute melee was triggered when Maranatha linebacker Terry Russo allegedly punched Kilpatrick Coach James Jackson, bloodying his lip.

Jackson said Russo ran into him at the end of a sweep Kilpatrick ran toward its sideline. Jackson then grabbed Russo by the jersey and told officials that Russo ran into him on purpose.

Russo momentarily escaped Jackson's grip, but when Jackson grabbed him by the facemask, Russo swung at him.

"It's an embarrassing situation," Jackson said. "There was nothing in the game between me and the players that perpetuated it. I don't talk to opposing players."

Jackson said it would have been impossible for Russo to mistake him for a Kilpatrick player.

"Not with a headset on," he said.

Russo tried to run away, but Kilpatrick players tackled him and the brawl began. Maranatha players sprinted across the field and joined in.

Coaches and security personnel broke up the fight and San Marino police were summoned, but did not get involved.

Russo and Kilpatrick players Kenneth Agee and Robert Layaoen were ejected immediately. After consulting with both coaches, officials stopped the game with 3 minutes 22 seconds left in the third quarter. Kilpatrick held a 22-17 lead and was declared the winner.

Athletic Directors Duane Diffie of Kilpatrick and John Rouse of Maranatha could not be reached for comment.

The winner, again: Marisol Barajas of Mission College has been reinstated as the women's winner of the Johnie O Invitational cross-country meet at Fairview Park in Costa Mesa on Nov. 2.

Barajas, a freshman from Van Nuys High, clocked a victorious 19 minutes 2 seconds over the 5,000-meter course to win what is in essence the Southern California championship, but was disqualified for wearing spikes.

Race officials claimed that Southern California junior college rules prohibit runners from wearing spikes in cross-country races, but they later discovered that there are no regulations concerning the matter in the rules.

With the reinstatement of Barajas, Mission has moved from 11th to fifth in the Johnie O team standings with 186 points. Ventura, which originally placed fifth with 190 points, drops to sixth with 195.

Checkup: Kelvin Gibbs, a freshman forward on Pepperdine's basketball team, is ineligible to play while the NCAA Clearinghouse completes a check into his academic background.

Gibbs did not receive credit for a required course at Bellflower High but made up the class at a community college.

The NCAA Clearinghouse, which handles academic matters, is investigating whether the course fulfilled the requirement for freshman eligibility.

Pepperdine suited up only nine players Monday night in a 77-59 exhibition victory over Athletes in Action at Firestone Fieldhouse. Senior guard Gerald Brown and two juniors--center omm'A Givens and guard Jelani Gardner--are using redshirt seasons. Junior center Bryan Hill led the Waves with 16 points and eight rebounds.

Pepperdine plays host to Club Portugal Telecom at 7 p.m. Thursday in its final exhibition before opening the season Nov. 22 at Weber State.

CSUN-bound: Anaheim Canyon High softball pitcher Veronica Lopez has committed to Cal State Northridge.

Lopez, a two-time All-Southern Section player, had a 12-6 record last season. She also played third base for the Comanches and batted .468 with 15 runs batted in.

Supercharged: P.J. Goossen of North Hollywood will fight former two-time world junior welterweight champion Rene Arredondo for the vacant World Boxing Federation super welterweight title on Dec. 19 at the Reseda Country Club.

Goossen, 26, is 17-0 with 11 knockouts. Arredondo, 34, is 49-11 with 42 knockouts.

Goossen remains tentatively scheduled to fight an opponent to be determined Nov. 21 when boxing returns to the Country Club after a three-year hiatus.

The Nov. 21 program will include bouts featuring heavyweights Lionel Butler, Jeremy Williams and Lance Whitaker.

Sidelined: Quarterback Marques Massengale and linebacker Thomas Han are academically ineligible and will not play for the Oak Park High football team in the Eagles' regular-season finale on Friday, Coach Dick Billingsley said.

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