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Division X

September 12, 2002|Lauren Peterson

2001 champion: Santa Monica (has moved to Division IV).

League favorites: Gardena Serra (Del Rey), Lompoc (Los Padres), La Puente (Montview), South Torrance (Pioneer), Temple City (Rio Hondo).

Contenders: L.A. Cathedral, Encino Crespi, Playa del Rey St. Bernard, (Del Rey); Morro Bay, Santa Maria St. Joseph (Los Padres); Covina Gladstone, Duarte (Montview); Culver City, El Segundo (Pioneer); Monrovia, La Canada (Rio Hondo).

Key dates: Sept. 20, La Puente at Duarte; Oct. 18, Culver City at South Torrance; Oct. 25, Cathedral at Serra; Nov. 1, Lompoc at Morro Bay; Nov. 15, Temple City at Monrovia.

The scoop: Last year's champion, Santa Monica, division runner-up North Torrance and the rest of the Ocean League have moved to Division IV, and traditional powers Bishop Amat and Loyola have gone on to Division I. With St. Paul moved out of the Del Rey League to the Mission, and with former Los Padres League powers Paso Robles and Atascadero now in Division IV, the Pioneer and Montview leagues gain prominence. Temple City, a Division X quarterfinalist a year ago, is the division's preseason favorite. South Torrance, Culver City and El Segundo all return top skill-position players.

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