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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS | AREA COLLEGE NOTEBOOK

Pepperdine Athletes Wave Flag

August 30, 2000|FERNANDO DOMINGUEZ

Five former Pepperdine athletes, a coach and a former coach are representing the United States at the Sydney Olympics on Sept. 15-Oct. 1.

Kevin Barnett, Chip McCaw and George Roumain are on the men's volleyball team. Coach Marv Dunphy and former coach Rod Wilde are assistants.

Barnett, a 6-foot-6 outside hitter, played for the Waves in 1996-97 after transferring from Pierce College.

Dain Blanton is competing in two-man beach volleyball and former swimmer Jennifer Gutierrez is competing in women's triathlon, a first-time Olympic event.

Tom Sorensen is an alternate on the men's volleyball team. Jeremy Pope is an alternate on the men's water polo team. Sorensen played for the U.S. at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta.

"Not selecting Tom Sorensen is perhaps the most difficult decision I have ever made," Coach Doug Beal said. "He has been a great performer for the USA over an extended period of time."

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New Laker Isaiah Rider has never let his brain get in the way of his mouth.

Rider, formerly known as J.R., had plenty of unsolicited opinions while playing at Antelope Valley College in 1990-91.

"I'm not saying I'm too good for junior college," Rider said that season, when he averaged 34.1 points and scored 30 points or more in a game 18 times. "But I'm saying I'm ready for the next level. Sometimes it's frustrating just playing, it feels like high school."

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