NOTEBOOK : Injuries Rob Ventura at 2 Positions

Ventura College, the defending Western State Conference baseball champion, has lost two of its key players to season-ending injuries.

Left-handed pitcher Dean McMillin, the returning WSC Player of the Year, is out with inflammation of his left shoulder. He saw limited action this season, and filed for a medical redshirt when the pain worsened. He was 10-3 last year with a 3.64 earned-run average and 89 strikeouts.

Third baseman Darrell McMillin, Dean's brother, also has been lost with a broken wrist. He is a returning all-conference player.

Both players said they will attempt to play again next season.

Ventura is 8-5 overall, 0-2 in conference play.

"It's real tough to lose your top two players," Ventura Coach Gary Anglin said. "We'll just go out and play hard and not make excuses."

All-stars: Eight Ventura County players were named to the 10-player WSC Northern Division all-star basketball team.

Ventura's Lester Neal was the leading vote-getter for the team and was joined by teammates Leo Parker and Chris Hantgin.

Moorpark was represented by Sam Crawford, Roger Thomas and Greg Taylor. Joe Daughrity and Randy Carter of Oxnard were also named to the team.

Moorpark's Debra Rabin and Cindy Wiley were named to the six-player Northern Division women's first team, and Angie Long was a second-team choice. Rabin also was picked for the 12-player all-Southern California squad.

Eight is great: Moorpark beat Golden West, 86-80, on Saturday to reach the final eight of the state men's basketball tournament.

Moorpark (24-10) will play Chabot (24-7) at 3 p.m. today at UC Irvine's Bren Center. The 13th-seeded team in the Southern California regional, Moorpark knocked off fourth-seeded Antelope Valley, 85-76, last week and has been reseeded as the third team among four southern representatives in the final eight.

If Moorpark wins, it will play the winner of the Imperial Valley-Merced game at 6 p.m. Friday.

Price of success: While Santa Clara High's basketball team works torepeat as State Division IV champion, baseball Coach John Lorenzana will wait patiently for one of his prized pitchers.

Evan Swanger, a reserve on the basketball team, is projected as the Saints' No. 2 starter. They could have used him in a 6-5 season-opening victory against Fillmore.

Santa Clara starter Tim Gutierrez pitched a seven-hit shutout before leaving with a 5-0 lead in the fifth inning. Fillmore rallied for five runs off two relievers to force the game into extra innings.

"That's exactly what we're looking for, another pitcher," Lorenzana said. "Hopefully, Swanger will be that pitcher. But we'll probably have to wait until the state playoffs are over."

In the meantime, Lorenzana is trying to convert senior right fielder Eric Clark into a starter. Clark experienced control problems while pitching four innings in scrimmage.

Winless streak ends: After 13 starts, Buena pitcher Jason Issacs suffered his first high school defeat, losing to Alemany, 8-3, Saturday in the Westside Tournament.

Issacs struck out seven and gave up one earned run on nine hits and one walk. He was victimized by eight Buena errors.

Last season, Isaacs posted a 12-0 record and was selected to the All-Southern Section 4-A Division first team.

"Our defense ranked up there with pathetic and we're working hard to regain the level of play we had at the end of last season," Buena Coach Stan Hedegard said.

The Bulldogs (1-1) made only two errors in beating University, 8-4, Tuesday in the second round.

Issacs earned his first career save by striking out the side in the seventh. He has 10 strikeouts in seven innings.

Leaving together: Jack Willard of Camarillo High began his coaching career with then-freshman Nichole Victoria and will end it with her graduation.

Willard resigned last week as girls' basketball coach, relieving himself of one of his three coaching duties. He also an assistant football coach and will begin his first year as baseball coach.

Willard said he resigned because he needed more time to prepare for the baseball season. Willard relinquished his post as the school's softball coach after accepting the baseball job last spring.

With Victoria in his lineup, Willard posted a four-year record of 61-40 overall and 28-20 in the Marmonte League. He enjoyed his best finish during the 1988-89 season when Camarillo came within one point of reaching the Southern Section 4-AA finals. The Scorpions lost to Anaheim Canyon, 49-48, in the semifinals.

Serving as the varsity captain for four years, Victoria scored 1,927 points to become the county's all-time leading scorer.

Eric Shepard and staff writer Brendan Healey contributed to this notebook.

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