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Hart girls hoops team forfeits wins

Second squad affected by residency falsification

Posted: January 16, 2009 9:57 p.m.
Updated: January 17, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 

The Hart High girls basketball team is the second Santa Clarita Valley prep sports program in as many days forced to forfeit all of its wins and dismiss a player because of falsification of residency.

Senior Amanda Corona admitted to Hart High School girls basketball coach Zach Koebel Friday afternoon that she did not live in the Santa Clarita Valley.

Corona transferred to Hart High from Grant High in Van Nuys prior to the 2008-09 school year.

Koebel was forthcoming about the situation, even calling The Signal to report the player's transgression.

"My heart dropped," said Koebel of how he felt when Corona told him. "I didn't know the apartment wasn't legit until today. Amanda came clean with me and let me know after shoot-around. We talked a little bit about it and I informed the administration right away."

Koebel, who is in his second year as Hart girls head coach, will keep his job as it was determined that he had no involvement in the falsification.

"I firmly believe that coach Koebel's first indication that anything was amiss was today," said Collyn Nielsen, Hart High principal.

Corona was the Indians' leading scorer this season with nearly 18 points per contest.

Last year, she was a teammate of Vanessa Aguilar at Grant.

Aguilar and Alexa Davison were ruled ineligible by Canyon High on Thursday for also having falsified residency records.

That transgression cost the Cowboys 11 wins and its coach Stan Delus, who admitted Thursday that he regularly drove one of the girls from her San Fernando Valley home to another home. That girl was then taken to Canyon High by a parent.

Aguilar and Davison will return to the school district of their residence.

That has not been determined for Corona yet.

The ball began to roll on Corona's exit from the team when an anonymous caller told a school official the senior did not live near the school.

School officials were preparing to do a residence check, but Corona met with administrators and Koebel before that happened.

"I think it's important to know in this particular instance, when the student enrolled they had the paperwork together. There were no red flags," Nielsen said. "There was no return mail to us, which is sometimes an indication."

Koebel said he hopes to keep Corona at Hart.

"I'll do anything I can to keep her at Hart," said. "She's a good kid and made a bad choice. Everyone's forgetting, these are kids.

"The really sad thing is all that's going to be lost. (People) are going to be quick to judge somebody."

Being a senior, Corona's promising high school basketball career is over.

The Indians forfeited its six wins attained with Corona on the team.

Hart will still be eligible for the CIF-Southern Section playoffs, but would have to finish in the top three of the Foothill League standings to make the postseason.

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