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Tuesday, June 8, 2004 Los Angeles City Section Champions, National Champions
Used to be that a Los Angeles City Section championship game at Dodger Stadium was significant enough for the Chancellors. But the last two have added a whole new dimension.
Tuesday, June 10, 2003 Los Angeles City Section Champions, National Champions
For the second consecutive season, the Chancellors went into the game with a chance to claim the national title. And for the secondtime in a row, they responded.
Senior right-bander Jason Dominguez, in perhaps the finest start of his four-year career, limited the San Pedro Pirates to five hits and an unearned run in the seventh inning to lead the Chancellors. 7-1 , in front of about 3,500 and help cap the firstperfect season in school history.
The victory earned the Chancellors (35-0) the national title by USA Today, Baseball America and StudentSports, and their second City Section title in a row and sixth overall. Chatsworth had been declared national champion in 2003 by USA Today, Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball.
This time, the long-haired Chancellors, who had made a team pact at the beginning of the season not to cut their hair until theylost a game. had to deal with the added pressure of an undefeated season Only Monroe, which finished 19-0 in 1971 had won a City Section title without losing a game. The top-seeded Chancellors had nearly doubled that victory total and were riding a state-record 49-game winning streak going into the game against the No. 2-seeded Pirates.
The Pepperdine-bound Dominguez (13-0) and an opportunistic offense made sure that San Pedro did not halt the marvelous streak Dominguez, who ran his career record to a school-best 35-1, stranded runners at second and third base in the first inning and cruised until tiring in the seventh, when the Pirates (31-4) scored on a throwing error with two outs.
Dominguez, who won three of the four playoff games and saved the Chancellors come-from-behind 10-7 victory over Kennedy in the semifinals, a game in which they trailed, 7-0. in the third inning, was selected the most valuable player of the championship game.
Chatsworth took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when junior first baseman Tom Cassidy's two-out single to center field drove in senior second baseman Willie Cabrera from third base. The Chancellors padded the lead to 5-0 with a four-run outburst in the second that included run-scoring singles by junior center fielder Mitul Patel and freshman third baseman Matt Dominguez. It was Dominguez's 65th run batted in, a state record for a freshman.
The Chancellors went ahead, 7-0. on a two-run single by Cabrera in the sixth inning that extended his state-record season total to 72. Cabrera was selected the most valuable player of the playoffs after producing 10 hits in 14 at-bats against Narbonne. Sylmar. Kennedy and San Pedro.
San Pedro loaded the bases after scoring with two outs in the seventh inning, but Dominguez retired Steve Carrillo on a grounder to freshman shortstop Mike Moustakas to end the game and secure the Chancellors a second consecutive national championship. It also meant that the Chancellors, including the coaching staff, could finally visit a barber.
Much more than a City Section title was at stake for the Chancellors when they faced the Carson Colts on a cool night at Dodger Stadium. The Chancellors went into the game ranked No. 1 in the nation and only a victory would guarantee their first national championship. They stood up to the challenge. Behind a marvelous performance by right-hander Justin Cassel and a huge home run by left fielder Bryan Petersen, the Chancellors defeated the Colts, 3-0, in front of about 4,000.
It was Chatsworth's third City Section title in five years and fifth overall. And when the final polls were announced a few days later, the Chancellors were declared national champions by USA Today, Baseball America magazine and Collegiate Baseball magazine. They were the first California team to be voted No. 1 in the nation by Baseball America in 11 years.
Cassel (15-0), a UC Irvine-bound senior who dominated all season, saved his best for the biggest stage yet. He took a no- hitter into the seventh inning before settling for his fourth one- hitter and eighth shutout of the year. As expected, he was selected the City Section most valuable player.
The Chancellors (33-1) reached the final riding a 14-game winning streak, including shutouts in two of the three playoff games: Fremont, 12-0; Kennedy, 2-0, and Banning, 4-3. Carson, which had lost to Chatsworth, 5-4, in a nonleague game at Carson in March, represented the last obstacle on the championship road.
Chatsworth wasted no time getting on the scoreboard. Senior leadoff batter and right fielder Keith Renno reached on an error and scored on senior catcher Jordan Sisson's single through the middle for a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Cassel then went to work and made the run stand inning after inning with a hard fastball and sharp curve ball that produced nine strikeouts. The first-inning run would have been sufficient to win the game, but Petersen came up with a virtual clincher in the sixth inning.
With senior pitcher Ross Liddell pinch-running at second base for junior outfielder Kevin Lee, who had walked as a pinch-hitter, Petersen turned on a 0-and-i offering from right hander Luis Magadan and blasted a 375-homer to right-center field to put the Chancellors ahead, 3-0. It was only the 15th homer in a City Section final since the title game started being played at Dodger Stadium in 1969.
A few minutes later, after senior second baseman Nimish Patel had fielded a grounder and fed senior shortstop Brett Munster for a game-ending force out at second base, the Chancellors were celebrating like they had never before with another City Section title and their first national championship.
Willie Cabrera, left, gets a high-five from Oliver Padre after scoring in the first inning.
Matt Dominguez follows the path of his first-inning flyout to the warning track in left-center field.
Mike Fernandez tracks his long foul drive in the second inning.
Willie Cabrera awaits a throw at second base as Dustin Garneau pulls up with a double in the seventh inning.
Mitul Patel slaps a run-scoring single to right field in Chatsworth's four-run second inning.
Willie Cabrera and Bryan Petersen (17) celebrate the Chancellors' victory.
Coach Tom Meusborn discusses a call with the third base umpire.
The Chancellors hoop it up in a traditional dogpile in the infield.
Jason Dominguez delivers in a complete-game performance to finish 13-0.