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Mission Impossible | High School Baseball / Playoffs

Chaminade's Season Ends Short of Final

Division III: Eagles manage only three hits and lose to Anaheim Canyon, 5-1.

June 04, 1997|TRIS WYKES | TIMES STAFF WRITER

WOODLAND HILLS — The Eagles have crash-landed.

Chaminade High, top-ranked among area baseball teams in The Times' latest regional poll, lost Tuesday to Anaheim Canyon, 5-1, in a Southern Section Division III semifinal at Pierce College.

The Eagles (27-3) managed only three hits in the game and only two against Canyon starter Mike Tomarelli (8-0), who lasted 5 1/3 innings.

"We flat-out didn't hit," Chaminade's Tyler Dersom said, staring at the ground.

Chaminade Coach Scott Drootin was quick to credit Tomarelli, whose team advances to play Artesia on Saturday in the division final at Anaheim Stadium.

But Drootin said the Eagles, who overcame a 6-1 deficit in a quarterfinal victory last Friday, also dug themselves an inescapable hole.

"We usually find ways to scrape and scrap back but it finally caught up with us," said Drootin, whose team trailed, 3-0, after five innings.

Canyon took a 1-0 lead in the first. No. 2 batter Jeff Leuenberger singled and moved to third when Chaminade right fielder Dan Dworsky lost a fly ball in the sun. Leuenberger scored on a groundout.

The Comanches (24-6), the second-place team from the Century League, increased their lead to 2-0 in the third. Jason Corapci singled, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a double by Tommy Duarte.

In the fifth, Canyon moved up, 3-0, when Brian Wahlbrink bunted for a single, was sacrificed to second and scored on a single by Tomarelli.

Chaminade, the Mission League champion, stranded two runners in scoring position with one out in the fifth. The Eagles broke through for a run in the sixth, but squandered another chance to do more damage.

Pinch-hitter Mike Whitaker led off with a walk, took second on a fielder's choice and scored on a one-out single by Dersom. Chris Gray followed by grounding into a double play.

Canyon scored twice in the seventh, including a solo home run by Leuenberger.

Tomarelli, a 6-foot-1, 185-pound senior left hander, allowed one run while striking out four and walking four. He pitched a no-hitter through 4 1/3 innings.

Gray (10-2) started for Chaminade and allowed eight hits and three runs--two earned--in six innings. He struck out seven, walked two and hit a batter.

"(Gray) battled but he was exhausted; we thought he was going to faint" Drootin said. "That's what happens when you don't give a guy run support."

Chaminade will lose six seniors to graduation, including four starters. In Drootin's first season the Eagles posted the program's first league championship and its first playoff victories.

"Hopefully we've started a tradition here," Drootin said. "I want the young guys to remember how it felt to watch (Canyon) jumping up and down on the way to Anaheim Stadium."

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