74 Valley Athletes, Coaches in Festival
They have come 74 strong, in all sizes and shapes, their backgrounds as varied as their ages.
Only two things unite these 74. They have come to the U.S. Olympic Festival in search of gold, silver or bronze and perhaps to fulfill a long-held dream of being in Seoul late next summer. And they have come from the San Fernando Valley.
There are more than 3,000 athletes here--670 from California.
The 74 from the Valley, counting players and coaches, are spread over 19 sports. The differences are sometimes dramatic.
At one level, you have 6-foot-8, 220-pound Trevor Wilson, the 19-year-old former Cleveland High School basketball star who is now a member of the UCLA Bruins. He is here to play forward on the West team, one of four Olympic Festival men’s squads.
At the other end of the spectrum is Lori Blasko, a 5-foot, 92-pound, 16-year-old figure skater from Westlake Village. She is in the pairs competition with Todd Sand of Van Nuys.
Agewise, the scale goes from 15-year-old Brant Lloyd of Camarillo, an attacker on one of the field hockey teams, to 44-year-old Larry Walker of Canoga Park, who is entered in the 20-kilometer walk.
Men’s field hockey, which seems to have found a national home in Moorpark, is the easy winner in terms of Valley representation. Of the 60 field hockey players on hand, 24 are from the Valley.
In addition, Andrew Dunning of Simi Valley is head coach of the South team, one of four men’s squads, and Jeff Jones of Thousand Oaks is assistant coach of the West.
For a couple of Valley competitors, the games are already over. Jack Pentlarge of Westlake Village was part of a silver-medal winning 400-meter freestyle relay team Thursday. He and his teammates--Jarret Winter of Rancho Palos Verdes, Mark Taliaferro of San Jose and John Green of Sheridan, Wyo.--finished in 3:31.87. The winning time was 3:29.75.
Behind Pentlarge’s group for the bronze were Bob Baldocchi of Woodland Hills, Dick Clarke of Grosse Pointe, Mich., David Burgess of Hinsdale and Brian Kurza of Darien, both Illinois towns. They were clocked in 3:32.66
For Baldocchi, it was the second bronze of the Festival. Wednesday, he teamed with Clarke, Burgess and Steve Herron of Kirkland, Wash., to finish third in the 800 free relay at 7:46.60. The winning time was 7:42.66.
Baldocchi also took a fifth Wednesday in the 200 free with a 1:56.17.
Pentlarge competed in the 200 fly Thursday, finishing in 2:07.07, good for seventh.
The Festival runs through July 26. The complete list of the Valley participants follows.
BASEBALL--Scott Sharts, Simi Valley; Joel Wolfe, Chatsworth.
BASKETBALL--Trevor Wilson, Reseda.
CANOE/KAYAK--Susan Bragg, Newbury Park; Gus Peterson, Agoura; Fred Spaulding, Newbury Park.
CYCLING--Derryl Halpern, Encino, Rick Denman (coach), North Hollywood.
DIVING--Perry White, Van Nuys.
FENCING--Chris O’Loughlin, Van Nuys; Spenser Thompson, Studio City.
FIELD HOCKEY--Larry Amar, Camarillo; Mohammed Barakat, Moorpark; John Dunlop, Moorpark; Ray Fierro, Moorpark; David Finkel, Westlake Village; Charles Forwood, Simi Valley; Don Goeser, Thousand Oaks; Sammy Hoang, Westlake Village; Tommy Hoang, Westlake Village; Eric Holtz, Simi Valley; Jeff Horrocks, Newbury Park; Mike Lee, Simi Valley; Brant Lloyd, Camarillo; Erik Lorenz, Moorpark; George Mejia, Moorpark; John O’Neill, Newbury Park; Tim O’Neill, Newbury Park; Alvin Pagan, Simi Valley; Tim Ratto, Camarillo; Matt Robbins, Camarillo; Mark Ruvalcaba, Thousand Oaks; Brian Spencer, Canoga Park; John Spencer, Moorpark; David Wisner, Westlake Village; Andrew Dunning (coach), Simi Valley; Jeff Jones (coach), Thousand Oaks.
FIGURE SKATING--Lori Blasko, Westlake Village; Todd Sand, Van Nuys; Jack Curtis (coach), Granada Hills; Josephine Lawless (coach), Canoga Park.
RHYTHMIC GYMNASTICS--Alexandra Feldman, Sherman Oaks; Irina Rubenshtein, Agoura; Alla Svirsky (coach), Van Nuys.
SOCCER--Glyn Hughes, Agoura; Thor Lee, Northridge; Kristina White, Camarillo.
SOFTBALL--Sheila Cornell, Encino; Barbara Jordan, Northridge; Debbie Langevain, Northridge; Karen Walker, Canoga Park; Karen Honey (coach), Van Nuys.
SPEEDSKATING--Charles King, Studio City; Keith King, Studio City; Steve Merrifield (coach), Agoura.
SWIMMING--Bob Baldocchi, Woodland Hills; Jack Pentlarge, Westlake Village.
SYNCHRONIZED SWIMMING--Betsy Visniski, Thousand Oaks.
TABLE TENNIS--Carol Davidson, Studio City; Kim Gilbert, Sepulveda.
TEAM HANDBALL--Renee Brum, Camarillo; Janine Ewing, Granada Hills; Jeff Fuin, Calabasas; Greg Kimberlin, Camarillo; Kelli Johnson, North Hollywood; Kirsten Smith, Saugus; Kurt Stone, Camarillo; Kevin Withrow, Thousand Oaks; Darleen Branigan (coach), Canoga Park; Tim Flaherty (coach), Simi Valley.
TRACK AND FIELD--Alice Brown, Panorama City; Denean Howard, Sylmar; Larry Walker, Canoga Park.
VOLLEYBALL--Ken Stanley (coach), Thousand Oaks.
WATER POLO--Larry Mouchawar, Mission Hills.