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the Valley and Ventura County | News Flash

Neill Sacked By Felony Charge

October 15, 1998

Former Hart High quarterback David Neill, a freshman starter, has been suspended from the Nevada football team after his arrest Tuesday by university police on a felony charge of obtaining telephone service with the intent to avoid payment.

Neill, 18, was released Tuesday on his own recognizance. He was also charged with fraudulent use of a credit card, a misdemeanor. Also arrested were freshmen football players Mark J. Marcos and Chris E. Haagenson.

Paul George, a university police spokesman, said an investigation was launched last month after a phone card vending machine was stolen from a school dormitory.

Paul Stuart, Nevada's sports information director, said Neill claimed there were stolen phone cards in his dorm room but they belonged to Marcos, his roommate. Stuart said Neill "inadvertently" used one of the stolen cards.

Tom Viloria, Neill's attorney, said, "David had no intent to commit any crime and we're working for a speedy resolution of the matter."

Nevada's athletic policy is that an athlete charged with a felony is suspended until the case is resolved. Neill could be reinstated to the football team if the charges are reduced. A decision by the Washoe County district attorney is expected as early as today.

Last week, Neill passed for an NCAA freshman record 611 yards against New Mexico State.

WATER POLO

Lancers lose five: Two water polo players from Thousand Oaks High have transferred to other schools and three others have been suspended from play because of a disciplinary infraction at the El Segundo tournament earlier this month.

The players, who were not identified, brought a BB gun on the overnight trip Oct. 2-3, according to a press release from the school. A hotel employee saw the gun and reported it to management. Police investigated but took no action.

Two players transferred rather than face expulsion. They are ineligible to participate in athletics this year at their new school. The length of suspension for the other three players was not released.

FOOTBALL

Down and out: College of the Canyons quarterback Peter Dirksen has quit the team and left school, Coach Chuck Lyon said. Dirksen, a freshman from L.A. Baptist, suffered a sprained ankle and knee three weeks ago and had been listed as third-string, behind starter Kevin Carrasco and Chris Kobe.

BASEBALL

Prime-time player: Montreal Expos first baseman Brad Fullmer, a Montclair Prep graduate, will be the featured guest on Valley Sports 2, a weekly local cable TV program, at 8:30 a.m. Saturday on ESPN2 in the West Valley.

SOCCER

Poll climbing: Ventura College (12-0-2) is ranked No. 6 among women's junior college teams in a poll by the National Soccer Coaches' Assn. of America. The Pirates are ranked No. 2 in the state.

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