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Westlake Quarterback Gives Commitment to Penn State

Zac Wasserman, a 6-foot-3 junior quarterback for Westlake High who passed for 2,404 yards and 22 touchdowns last season, has committed to Penn State.

Wasserman made his decision Tuesday while visiting the Penn State campus, according to Coach Jim Benkert of Westlake.

“I think it’s perfect for him,” Benkert said. “It’s a pocket offense predicated on play-action passes.”

Wasserman is a highly regarded passer with limited mobility. He is the second junior quarterback from the region to make a college commitment. Matt Cassel of Chatsworth committed to USC.

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* Crespi High has called a news conference today to announce its new football coach. A top candidate is Ron Gueringer, coach at Valley View High in Moreno Valley and a former Crespi assistant.

Gueringer was The Times’ 1996 coach of the year in the Inland Empire when he was at Corona Centennial.

Tim Lins resigned as Crespi’s coach earlier this month to become coach at Moorpark High.

BASKETBALL

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* Gilbert Arenas of Grant High will play in the Dada All-Star Classic, featuring seniors from across the nation, on April 18 at Pauley Pavilion.

B.J. Ward of Santa Clara will participate in a preceding game involving top players from Southern California.

GOLF

* Kyle Thurston of Moorpark shot a three-round total of 232 and finished seventh in the 12- and 13-year-old division of the 49th Los Angeles City Junior Championship on Monday at Wilson Golf Course in Griffith Park.

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Thurston, 13, plays out of Sunset Hills Country Club in Thousand Oaks.

Jason Wilk of Woodland Hills Country Club finished 12th in the division at 236 and Ramie Sprinkling of Saticoy Country Club in Somis was 14th at 241.

TRACK AND FIELD

* Brandi Prieto of Cal State Northridge has been selected Big Sky Conference women’s field event athlete of the week.

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Prieto, a junior, won the triple jump with a Big Sky and school record leap of 42-11 3/4 in the Northridge Invitational on Saturday.

She broke the conference record of 42-10 1/4 set by Abigail Ferguson of Boise State in 1996 and the school mark of 42-3 1/2 set by Lolita Pile in 1990.

CROSS-COUNTRY

* Scott King of Birmingham High has been selected the 1998 state girls’ coach of the year by the California Coaches Assn.

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King, who will be honored at a ceremony in San Diego in June, guided Birmingham to its second City Section title in three years last November.

The Patriots finished 12th in the state championships.

* Jim Ortiz, a former Southern Section champion at Barstow High, has replaced Roger Evans as the girls’ coach at Simi Valley High.

Evans, who guided Simi Valley to the Marmonte League dual-meet title last year, resigned in January after nine seasons because he felt he was spreading himself too thin between coaching and teaching English.

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Ortiz won the 2-A Division cross-country title in 1981 and was 3-A champion in 1982.

VOLLEYBALL

* Twyla Thomas, longtime girls’ coach at Quartz Hill High, has resigned.

Thomas, who coached the Rebels to three Golden League titles, will be replaced by Jason Peplinski.

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SOCCER

* Cal Lutheran Coach Dan Kuntz was selected National Soccer Coaches Assn. of America Division III women’s coach of the year for the west region.

Kuntz guided the Regals to a 14-5 record, including 12-0 in Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play last fall.

Kuntz’s record in six seasons at Cal Lutheran is 89-26-2.

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* Ashley Scott and Oskar Kantoft of Cal Lutheran were selected National Soccer Coaches Assn. of America scholar-athletes at a recent NSCAA meeting in Philadelphia.

Scott, a junior midfielder for the women’s team, was the only non-senior among 11 players chosen to the Division III Scholar-Athlete first team. She has a 3.77 grade-point average and helped the Regals win their eighth consecutive Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference title last fall.

Kantoft, a native of Malmo, Sweden, and a senior forward for the men’s team, earned Division III Scholar-Athlete third-team honors. He has a 3.71 GPA and led Cal Lutheran in goals (13), assists (six) and points (32) for the second consecutive season.


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