The Colleges : College Officiating Still Alien to Occidental's Crawley

Jon Crawley, a 6-foot-8, 225-pound forward on the Occidental College men's basketball team, grabbed six rebounds and made seven of 10 shots for 14 points against Whittier on Monday.

Not stunning figures, except that Crawley played only 12 minutes before fouling out.

And his last foul--the one that Crawley protested most vehemently--was his most blatant.

"He decked five guys," Occidental Coach Brian Newhall said. "He went over the back of every guy on the floor. It wasn't a touch foul.

"Then, he looks at the ref and says, ' Me? "'

Crawley, a British citizen and part-time resident of Hong Kong, says that he is still adjusting to the relatively quick whistles of American college officials. More aggression was allowed in the Hong Kong leagues.

"The police team was quite dirty," Crawley said in November. "They'll grab you in all sorts of places, pull you, trip you and punch you when the ref's not looking. Then, the crowd gets really rowdy and they start throwing things out on the floor.

"I would push back and the whole crowd would just stand up and boo in unison because I was the only white guy there. One time the ref made some bad calls and the crowd came down and beat him up."

And Crawley wasn't one to back down from a skirmish.

"There would be fights," he said, pausing. "And I'd be in them."

Sticky fingers: Occidental guards have learned that passing the ball to center Chris Anderson or Crawley is much like investing money in an Individual Retirement Account: you know it's in there, you can see it, but you can't touch it.

Anderson has 14 assists in 23 games, Crawley 16 in 22 games.

But the two do pay dividends.

Anderson averages 18 points a game and leads Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference players with a field-goal percentage of 59.7%. Crawley averages 8 points a game.

Bull market: When Northridge upset 16th-ranked Cal State Dominguez Hills, 68-61, on Saturday, it marked only the third time in 12 California Collegiate Athletic Assn. games that the Toros had allowed more than 60 points.

Dominguez Hills, with a defense that has been ranked among Division II leaders this season, had limited conference opponents to 42.3% shooting and an average of 57 points a game.

Northridge shot 54.3% and made 15 of 18 free throws.

Dave Yanai, Dominguez Hills' coach, did not seem too concerned about the loss. "When you have a good stretch and win nine in a row, you'd rather have a loss in this situation rather than later in the postseason tournament," he said.

Despite the loss, Dominguez Hills (10-2) remained in a first-place tie with UC Riverside, which was upset by Cal State Bakersfield.

Back to basics: After losing four games to Division I teams, the Northridge softball team returned to its comfort zone--Division II opposition--with predictable results at the Chico State tournament last weekend.

The Lady Matadors won six consecutive games to claim the tournament title, Debbie Dickmann was selected most valuable pitcher and catcher Char Schmitt was named most valuable player.

Dickmann threw four shutouts and was the winning pitcher in relief as CSUN defeated San Francisco State, 5-1, in a four-inning, rain-shortened championship game Saturday. Schmitt, a senior transfer from Arizona State, was two for two in the championship game and drove in three runs.

Cal State Long Beach, ranked fifth in Division I, will play host to Northridge in a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday.

It rains and pours: Vale Lopez, a pitcher on the Northridge baseball team, must have thought he was being followed by a black cloud.

The Matadors' No. 3 starter, Lopez lost his first two scheduled starts to rain-outs, then was driven to cover by a torrent of hits in a brief relief appearance against Cal State Long Beach last Friday, allowing six runs in less than two innings. All of which made Sunday's outing against St. Mary's important.

Said Lopez, who struck out seven without allowing a walk in a 2-1 victory Sunday: "I guess I had something to prove to the team, the coach and to myself."

Stat leaders: Tressie Millender, a freshman forward at Canyons, led Western State Conference players in scoring with an average of 26 points a game. Vanessa Hornbuckle, formerly of Newbury Park High, was next at 25.5 for Cuesta.

Ruth Aguilar of Valley shot 54.4% to lead in field-goal percentage and Hornbuckle was first in free-throw percentage at 75.2%.

Kristie Sterbens of Moorpark was the conference leader in assists with 181, an average of 6.5 a game.

Pierce hire: Bill Norton has been added to the Pierce football staff as assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach.

Norton is a former Glendale College assistant who previously was head coach at Palmdale and Bishop Montgomery high schools.

Staff writers Kevin Baxter, Mike Hiserman, Sam Farmer, Gary Klein and Ralph Nichols contributed to this notebook.

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