Granada Hills High begins defense of its City 4-A baseball championship today at 3 p.m. when it hosts El Camino Real.
The Highlanders, the No. 2-seeded team in the City, behind Chatsworth, were supposed to play Canoga Park. But on Wednesday, El Camino Real was given back five league victories that it was forced to forfeit for using an ineligible player.
This put the Conquistadores in the playoffs and knocked out Canoga Park.
Granada Hills won the Mid-Valley League with an 11-4 record, and Coach Darryl Stroh has won five City titles in the last 15 years.
The Highlanders won the championship last season by defeating El Camino, 15-4, at Dodger Stadium.
Several other Valley teams are in action today in the 4-A playoffs. Monroe travels to Grant to play the East Valley League champions. San Fernando plays at North Hollywood, while Cleveland hosts Banning. Sylmar travels to Narbonne to take on the second-place finisher in the Marine League.
Among the top regular-season batting averages posted by members of playoff teams are .488 by Roy Mijares (San Fernando); .482 by Mark Bowen (Cleveland), and .470 by Jon Hauptman (Grant). Peter Washington led with four home runs. Hauptman knocked in 22 runs, followed by Mijares and Michael Berger (Grant) with 20 each.