In the Santa Clarita Valley, a sprawling swath of Southern California suburbia, they still talk about the best high school baseball game they ever saw. It happened nearly 13 years ago, but Jim Ozella, the baseball coach at Hart High School, still keeps the scorebook numbers just a few clicks away on his computer. There was a first-round draft pick on the mound and a future NFL quarterback playing shortstop. But the teachers and coaches at Hart mostly remember the 18-year-old pitcher everybody knew as "Jamie." He not only helped win a state championship as a junior but also impressed his art teacher with his drawing skills during morning classes. He was the type of kid, Ozella says, who just wanted to win. On that day in Santa Clarita, the Hart Indians were playing Centennial-Corona and star left-hander Mike Stodolka in the state quarterfinals. Ozella called on Jamie Shields in the middle innings. He had battled back issues for most of the season and pitched Hart to a playoff victory the previous night. But the ball needed to be in Shields' hand again. "It was a big-game situation," Ozella says now.
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