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JUST PREPS

Sophomore Seven Lead Garfield to Top

May 29, 1997|SEAN WATERS | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

A new generation of athletic success is starting with Garfield High's young baseball team. For Washington, a baseball coaching era came to an end Wednesday.

The Bulldogs started seven sophomores and pounded two Washington pitchers for nine hits en route to an 8-6 victory in the City Section Division 3-A championship game at Dodger Stadium.

Garfield (24-10) won its first title since 1956 when the section held only one title game.

"Obviously, this win means a lot to this school's program," Garfield Coach Bill Gordon said.

Kermit Taylor has run a well-respected program at Washington and after 27 years, he confirmed he coached his last baseball game. The Generals finished at 17-7.

"I feel as good about this season as I did my first season," said Taylor, who also took the Generals to the 3-A finals in 1990.

Pitching and fielding prevented Taylor from retiring from baseball as a winner. Starting pitcher Jamayal Gutierrez (7-3) gave up six earned runs on eight hits and nine walks in six innings and the Generals made three errors.

Sophomores Edgar Serratos and Leo Acevedo and senior Jjallil Sandoval each drove in two runs for Garfield. Serratos, who had two sacrifice flies, and Acevedo, who had a two-run triple in the first, had been with the Bulldogs from the start. But it was the addition of five other sophomores promoted from junior varsity 27 games into the season that helped the Bulldogs win their last 10 in a row.

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