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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS

Westlake Finds a Silver Lining

Marmonte baseball: Reserve's two-out double in seventh lifts Warriors over Thousand Oaks, 5-4, in amicable meeting of rivals.

March 23, 2000|STEVE HENSON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

THOUSAND OAKS — No ill will filled the bill.

Westlake High defeated host Thousand Oaks, 5-4, Wednesday in a Marmonte League game matching the region's top-ranked baseball teams.

A two-out double by reserve Matt Silver in the seventh inning scored Tyler Adamczyk, snapping a 4-4 tie and keeping the Warriors unbeaten.

The players and coaches shook hands and went home. That's all there was to it at Thousand Oaks, where the crowd was so large people lined the fence five deep.

The intense rivalry made the joy and pain especially acute. But any animosity was eclipsed by quality baseball.

"I'm happy because it was a good high school baseball game and everyone showed a lot of character and class," said Coach Bill Sizemore of Thousand Oaks.

No one showed more mettle than Silver, who batted only because pitcher Jesse Kozlowski was lifted for a pinch-runner in the fifth.

"We have a lot of depth on this team, a lot of guys who can contribute," Westlake Coach Chuck Berrington said.

Kozlowski homered and doubled, but struggled on the mound, walking six in five innings and allowing four runs.

Thousand Oaks (7-2, 2-1 in league play) took a 4-3 lead in the fifth on a two-run double by freshman Chad Lundahl, but sophomore right-hander Tyler Carr came on in relief and got a ground out to end the threat.

Westlake (9-0, 3-0) answered immediately when pinch-hitter Jamie Hesselgessersingled and advanced to third on Kozlowski's double to begin the sixth against reliever Greg Simonetti (3-1).

Simonetti struck out the next two batters, then loaded the bases by intentionally walking Jon Shepard, who had doubled andsingled. Cory Taillon walked on four pitches, however, forcing home Hesselgesser with the tying run.

Ryan McCarthy (2-0) replaced Carr to open the sixth and was aided by a great play by Taillon. With Lancer runners on first and second, Adam Leavitt singled sharply. Taillon, the right fielder, charged the ball and fired a strike to catcher Mike Nickeas, who tagged out Billy Lockin.

Leavitt homered to open the third, and the leadoff batter walked in the first, second and fourth. Kozlowski pitched out of bases-loaded situations in the first and fourth.

"He was on the verge of falling off the plank several times and he held on," Berrington said.

Thousand Oaks starter Chris Cordeiro struck out six and walked none, but was nicked for runs in the first, second and fifth innings. Sizemore lifted him because he was close to his 100-pitch limit.

It was a sensible move, one that indicated the rivalry was in its proper perspective.

"We are all friends here," Taillon said. "It's a rivalry, that's for sure. We just know we have to beat T.O. to win the league."

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