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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS | AREA HIGH SCHOOL NOTEBOOK:
Baseball

New Division Doesn't Add Up for Muckey

March 29, 2000|ERIC SONDHEIMER

Since coming to Crespi High in 1987, Coach Scott Muckey has insisted his team compete in Division I.

"I don't really care how many [Southern Section] titles we win, I wanted to play against the best," he said.

But starting next season, Muckey won't have a choice. A vote last week by the Southern Section Council will prohibit teams from moving up in enrollment-based divisions for the playoffs, ending Crespi's days in Division I.

Division placement for the playoffs is used in baseball, basketball, cross-country, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball. Crespi has been able to move up to a higher division in baseball by declaring its intention before the season. Not anymore. The Celts will be stuck in Division IV.

"I don't like it," Muckey said. "To me, I don't think you can call it a Division I championship now. It's not the best teams. It's not open to anyone to come to play. They have voted some of the better schools out. I'd call it a public schools tournament."

Volleyball coaches also are in an uproar. In the 26-year history of the Southern Section boys' volleyball championships, Manhattan Beach Mira Costa, Newport Harbor, Laguna Beach and Corona del Mar have combined to win half of the top division titles. All four, under the new rule, would be prohibited from playing Division I next season.

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Assistant coach Craig Sherwood of Burroughs has created a web site for the baseball team: www.burroughsbaseball.com.

Each player was asked to reveal "something we don't know" and their "most embarrassing moment."

Among the revelations: pitcher Bryan Schackmann owns 200 Ken Griffey Jr. baseball cards, shortstop Derek Walker ran around the bases the wrong way in kindergarten, and catcher Mike Silva wants to become a cartoonist.

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Catchers in the Valley Mission League should beware of junior shortstop Abel Pulido of Van Nuys.

Pulido is batting .514 with 14 stolen bases. A running back in football, he's putting his speed to good use on the basepaths.

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