The LookOut sports

Santa Monica Sports Notes

Samohi won a boys track meet from Mira Costa, 74-62. The Samohi girls lost, 73-63, their first defeat following two wins.

The Samohi boys have a 4-0 record. They swept the 100 with senior Brandon Allen winning in 10.9. Football star Derrick Davis was second and Corey Lenaris was third. They also swept the 200, led by junior Michael Ruiz. Davis was second and Allen third.

Ruiz also won the 400 in 54.1, Lewis Orta won the 3200 meter run, football star Darius Bell won the shot put and Marchello Johnson was first in the discus throw...

The Samohi boys volleyball team entered a non-league match against Santa Margarita with an 11-2 record and won the first two sets. However, the Vikings then lost the match, 15-13, 19-17, 4-15, 12-15, 12-15...

Jonas Swyer, the star pitcher at Samohi who has gone on to the University of Connectucut, earned his first collegiate win last week by pitching three innings of relief in a victory over Massachusetts. Swyer struck out the first four batters he faced.

Samohi Comes Close, But Can't Beat West Torrance

By Mitch Chortkoff

Sometimes you gain something in defeat. The Santa Monica High baseball team did that last week by being competitive against nationally ranked West Torrance.

The Vikings lost twice. First, a 5-1 defeat at West Torrance Wednesday. Then a 4-1 defeat Friday at Santa Monica.

West Torrance, the Bay League leader, has been ranked as high as third in the nation by USA Today. It lost a non-league game to L.A. City champion Kennedy and dropped to 11th.

However, with a 10-1 record the team is likely to move back into the Top Ten this week.

Against this powerhouse opponent Coach Mike Czarnetzki's junior-dominated team had a chance to win both games.

In Wednesday's defeat the Vikings had two runners on base in the seventh inning but could only throw a scare into the favored opponent before succumbing.

First baseman Sean Gowers pitched a complete game, an admirable performance when pressed into service due to Danny Casanova having a sore shoulder. The 6-foot-4 Gowers is a righthander who throws hard.

In Friday's game Rocky Collis shut out the powerful West Torrance team for five innings. Samohi, which scored in the first, had a 1-0 lead.

It was high drama. Two more innings and Samohi would have gained national recognition. And the way Collis was pitching it looked possible.

However, West Torrance ranks above most high school teams for a reason. It rose to the challenge with three runs in the sixth and another in the seventh. And Samohi players went home with thoughts of what might have been.

It was a case of missed opportunities. Not only did Samohi lead for five innings it had several chances to score again. But a runner was stranded on third base in the first. And in the fifth Samohi had two runners on with one out and the bases loaded with two outs. But Gowers, who hit the ball hard three times, grounded out to first to end the inning.

Samohi was a poor defensive team last season but has made remarkable improvement. That was evident in the third inning when West Torrance loaded the bases with no outs but failed to score.

Right fielder James Cooper, the Vikings' quarterback in football, displayed his strong arm by throwing a runner out at home to complete a double play after catching a fly ball.

Samohi executed two other double plays.

Due to an injury to catcher Cesar Flores, freshman Anthony Ariola was behind the plate. What great experience he's getting so early in his high school career.

In defeat Samohi took a step in the development of the program. It played a marquee game that attracted a large crowd.

The audience included Athletic Director Mike Griswold, football coach Norm Lacy and several members of the Samohi softball team.

Samohi will be home Wednesday at 3:15 p.m. against Torrance and will play at Torrance Friday. The next week the Vikings will participate in the Gael Easter Classic in Las Vegas.

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