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NOTEBOOK

Choirboy Would Rather Hit Than Belt Out a Tune

May 04, 1999| From Staff Reports

As much as first baseman Tyler Adamczyk of Westlake High enjoys singing in the school choir, he has no intention of belting out the national anthem before a game.

"That's exactly what my choir director wants me to do," he said. "I think I want people to know me as a baseball player rather than a singer."

The way Adamczyk has been crushing the ball, he won't have to worry.

Adamczyk, a 6-foot-5 1/2 sophomore, leads Westlake with a .556 batting average (20 for 36). He's 2-0 as a pitcher and understandably has Coach Chuck Berrington excited about his future.

"He's probably going to be 6-8," Berrington said. "And he's got a great voice."

Adamczyk receives plenty of teasing from teammates. "Come on, Tyler, sing for us," is the usual dare.

Adamczyk makes it clear, "I'm not going to go to college on a choir scholarship."

Although he starts for the basketball team, baseball could be the sport in which he has the most potential.

As for singing, Adamczyk might be willing to perform "Take me out to the ballgame" if Westlake reaches the Southern Section Division III final at Edison Field.

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Not many people knew of Roy Spaulding before the season, but the Crescenta Valley junior catcher is a rising star.

He leads the defending Division I champions with a .433 batting average and he has committed only one error, throwing out five of eight baserunners attempting to steal.

Spaulding wouldn't be starting if senior Luke Peterson had not injured his shoulder before the season. With Peterson limited to designated hitter duty, Spaulding has caught every inning for the Falcons.

"He has a chance to play at the next level," Falcon Coach Phil Torres said.

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Although the school does not keep official records, Granada Hills coaches believe first baseman Jon Bringuier has become the school's career home run leader with 21. Bringuier was the first Highlander to play varsity baseball as a freshman. This season, he leads City players with nine home runs.

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Before the season, Canyon expected sterling performances from pitcher Mike Munn.

He's finally delivering.

Munn, who started 1-3 with several no-decisions, won his last two games against Saugus and Burbank, striking out 20 and allowing only seven hits and two earned runs in 20 innings.

"He's being the dominant senior we expected him to be from the beginning, " Coach Adam Schulhofer said. "For him to pitch that well down the stretch means a lot to us."

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Outfielder Jesse Dechter of El Camino Real is expected to return today, three weeks after suffering a fractured skull when hit by a pitch against Granada Hills.

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Westlake employed the "Michael Falco shift" when it faced the right-handed hitting Agoura outfielder last week.

The Warriors moved their third baseman to left field and shifted their right fielder and second baseman toward center field. Falco singled against the shift, then was intentionally walked.

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Anthony Sanchez of Rio Mesa went 11 for 11 in four games, setting a school record for consecutive hits. He had stretches of six and five hits in a row interrupted when he was hit by a pitch.

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Matthew Merricks, younger brother of UCLA outfielder Charles Merricks, has been the winning pitcher in 63% of Oxnard's victories.

Matthew, a junior, has 69 strikeouts in 35 2/3 innings and is 5-1 with a 3.18 earned-run average for Oxnard (8-10-1, 3-5 in the Pacific View League).

He threw a four-hitter and had 17 strikeouts in a 7-3 victory over Hueneme last week.

*

Notre Dame pitcher Phillip Polanco, who is 8-0 with a 1.09 ERA, did not pitch last week because of a sore back, but he is expected to return this week for the Knights (19-4, 9-1).

Staff writers Mike Bresnahan and Eric Sondheimer contributed to this notebook.

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