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Mater Dei, El Dorado Top-Seeded in Their Divisions


Mater Dei and El Dorado will be the top-seeded in Divisions I and II when the Southern Section baseball playoffs begin today.

In Division III, Sonora is the second-seeded, Foothill the third-seeded and Canyon the fourth-seeded. In Division IV, La Quinta is second-seeded, Magnolia fourth. Calvary Chapel and and Brethren Christian--which finished 1-2 in the Olympic League--are the second- and third-seeded in Division V.

And in Division VI, Heritage Christian is second-seeded.

The pairings were released Monday by the section office.

Division I

Defending champion: La Puente Bishop Amat, a 10-9 winner over Fountain Valley.

Top teams: Mater Dei (22-3), Bishop Amat (22-4), Esperanza (20-5), Servite (23-3).

Dark horse: Lakewood (17-9).

Noteworthy: Fountain Valley has been to three consecutive finals, winning in 1995 and 1996.

Division II

Defending champion: Canyon, a 5-1 winner over Upland.

Top teams: El Dorado (22-4), West Torrance (22-4), La Puente Nogales (20-6), Glendora (21-5).

Dark horse: Baldwin Park (20-6).

Noteworthy: Neither of last year's finalists are in this division; Canyon is now in Division III, Upland is in Division I. West Torrance catcher Tony Cosentino set the Southern Section career hits mark this season (182).

Division III

Defending champion: La Mirada, an 8-1 winner over Covina Charter Oak.

Top teams: West Hills Chaminade (27-2), Sonora (22-3), Foothill (19-6), Canyon (20-6).

Dark horse: Santa Margarita (19-7).

Noteworthy: Santa Margarita outfielder Jeff Kuno has 52 hits, passing the county single-season record (51) set by Los Alamitos' Robbie Katzaroff in 1985.

Division IV

Defending champion: Rialto, a 6-0 winner over Fontana A.B. Miller.

Top teams: El Segundo (23-3), La Quinta (23-4), Calabasas (24-2), Magnolia (20-2-1).

Dark horse: Bolsa Grande (19-6).

Noteworthy: La Quinta catcher Gerald Laird (.500, 10 homers, 37 RBIs) could turn the playoffs into his personal showcase.

Division V

Defending champion: Pasadena La Salle, a 5-1 winner over Cerritos Valley Christian.

Top teams: Santa Maria St. Joseph (24-0), Calvary Chapel (14-10), Brethren Christian (18-7), Long Beach St. Anthony (18-5).

Dark horse: Lake Isabella Kern County (21-5).

Noteworthy: Seven of Calvary Chapel's 10 losses came in nonleague games against teams in higher divisions.

Division VI

Defending champion: Temecula Linfield, an 8-5 winner over Riverside Woodcrest Christian.

Top teams: Arcadia Rio Hondo Prep (10-8), Heritage Christian (17-4), Colton Christian Center Academy (12-8), Hesperia Christian (11-11).

Dark horse: Victor Valley Christian (17-2).

Noteworthy: Heritage Christian's Paul Caffrey (.588) is trying to repeat as the county batting champion.


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