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It's No High Road for Chatsworth

City Section baseball: Chancellors are top-seeded in City Championship playoffs, but are dealt unfavorable draw in odd seeding session.

May 20, 1999|ERIC SONDHEIMER | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Chatsworth High has been seeded No. 1 for the City Championship baseball tournament, but you wouldn't know it based on the seedings a committee of coaches voted on Wednesday night at Hamilton High.

"We would have been better off coming in second in our league," a frustrated Chatsworth Coach Tom Meusborn said. "If we win this, we'll definitely deserve it."

Despite losing only one game in more than one month, Chatsworth (23-3) will open the playoffs on Tuesday at home against No. 16 San Pedro (18-9), the second-place finisher from the tough Pacific League.

If the Chancellors get past the Pirates, a quarterfinal matchup is looming against No. 9 Sylmar (19-7), with a possible semifinal battle against No. 4 Granada Hills (20-6) and pitcher Kameron Loe. The final is set for June 3 at Dodger Stadium.

Chatsworth's bracket is loaded with top Valley teams. In contrast, the team that came out with perhaps the best road to Dodger Stadium is two-time defending champion El Camino Real (19-6), the second-place finisher to Chatsworth in the West Valley League.

El Camino Real, seeded No. 6, will play host to No. 11 Narbonne (15-12) in its opener, then could take on No. 3 Poly (22-7), a team the Conquistadores have already beaten this season. It's the same seeding the Conquistadores had last season on the way to their fourth City title this decade.

The other big winner is No. 2 Banning (26-5), which has won 20 consecutive games. The Pilots open against No. 15 University (18-8), then would meet the winner of the game between No. 10 Kennedy (16-15) and No. 7 Westchester (22-7) in the quarterfinals.

It was a difficult seeding session because, for the first time since 1982, the tournament was not predetermined by division. The panel of coaches chose what they consider the best 16 teams for the City Championship tournament, with the next 16 going into the City Division tournament.

"You probably can't print what I want to say," said Granada Hills Coach Steve Thompson, who was upset that Poly was seeded ahead of his team.

No. 5 Wilson (21-6), No. 8 Roosevelt (18-4) and No. 14 Marshall (20-5) each will make their first appearance in the championship tournament in more than 15 years. They used to be in the 3-A division.

Carson (16-14-1) is seeded No. 1 for the 16-team City Division playoffs. Also making the tournament are Cleveland, Reseda, Taft, Birmingham, Monroe and San Fernando.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

CITY SECTION PLAYOFF PAIRINGS

City Championship

* No. 1 Chatsworth (23-3)*

* No. 16 San Pedro (18-9)

* No. 9 Sylmar (19-7)*

* No. 8 Roosevelt (18-4)

* No. 5 Wilson (21-6)*

* No. 12 South Gate (18-11)

* No. 13 Grant (17-9)

* No. 4 Granada Hills (20-6)*

* No. 3 Poly (22-7)*

* No. 14 Marshall (20-5)

* No. 11 Narbonne (15-12)

* No. 6 El Camino Real (19-6)*

* No. 7 Westchester (22-7)*

* No. 10 Kennedy (16-15)

* No. 15 University (18-8)

* No. 2 Banning (26-5)*

City Division

* No. 1 Carson (16-14-1)*

* No. 16 Elizabeth (14-1)

* No. 9 Bell (16-12)

* No. 8 Taft (7-19)*

* No. 5 Reseda (17-10)*

* No. 12 Hamilton (13-14)

* No. 13 Monroe (10-17)

* No. 4 Cleveland (11-15)*

* No. 3 Palisades (17-15)*

* No. 14 San Fernando (5-21-1)

* No. 11 Los Angeles (10-11)

* No. 6 Franklin (12-9)*

* No. 7 Huntington Park (20-9)*

* No. 10 Birmingham (13-16)

* No. 15 Venice (11-10)

* No. 2 Garfield (17-11)*

*--Home team

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