Laguna Beach Sports Update


Breakers Capture State Title


LBHS Girls Water Polo

Laguna girls water polo swept the top high school competition in the state for the third straight year and the fifth time in six years. Front row (L-R): Molly Renner, Morgan VanAlphen, Grace Houlahan, Rachael Carver, Tea Poljak, Lauren Schneider. Back row (L-R): Nicole Struss, Ava Houlahan, Jessie Rose, Imani Clemons, Natasha Denny, Emma Singer, Kenedy Corlett. Not pictured: Lela McCarroll and Skylar Kidd.

For the third straight year and the fifth time in six years, Laguna won the California High School Tournament—the only event that features high school teams from all over the state. Thirty-eight high schools entered this year’s girls tournament, plus two squads representing Laguna.

 “A” Team

The tournament opened with crushing 17-7 win over Mira Costa on Friday, July 12, at Segerstrom High School. Breakers led 7-1 after the first period as Tea Poljak scored three goals with Rachael Carver and Imani Clemons adding two each. In the evening contest, Breakers pounded Clovis West 15-1 led by Rachael Carver’s three goals.

On Saturday at Corona del Mar, Laguna struggled early but finally defeated San Clemente 15-9. Jesse Rose provided two early goals and had six assists. Morgan Van Alphen added three scores in the second period while Molly Renner (four goals) and Nicole Struss were key on defense. Lauren Schneider was in goal. That afternoon, Laguna struggled with Orange Lutheran in a lackluster contest, finally pulling out the win 7-6. Molly Renner had another strong performance to help secure the victory and Lauren Schneider had some key saves in the second half.

Sunday morning Laguna had a similar performance against Newport Harbor, pulling out a 7-5 win in the Corona del Mar pool. Molly Renner, Nicole Struss, and Tea Poljak provided the scoring while Jesse Rose recorded four steals. In the afternoon contest, Laguna was “on” and pounded Foothill 9-1 to secure the title. Natasha Denny had a very strong performance as goalie while both Molly Renner and Nicole Struss provided outstanding play.

For the tournament, Molly Renner led in scoring for Laguna with 18 goals, followed by Nicole Struss and Tea Poljak each with 9. Jesse Rose led in assists, while Rachael Carver and Molly Renner were tops in steals.

Final Top 10 Standings: Newport edged Foothill 6-5 for second. 4 – Orange Lutheran, 5 – Corona del Mar, 6 – Campolindo, 7 – San Clemente, 8 – Los Alamitos, 9 – Mater Dei.


“B” Team

The B Squad started the tournament facing Campolindo (Moraga) on Friday at Villa Park. The NorCal # 2 Cougars were 19-7 last season losing 11-7 to undefeated Acalanes in the open division finals for the North Coast CIF Section. Laguna used all 17 B team and JV players to end up tied at 8-8 at the end of regulation play. Tournament rules used a shootout rather than overtime or sudden-death play with both teams missing two shots out of five in the first round with Campolindo prevailing on the last shot of the second round to advance. The Cougars went on to finish 6th overall, while the B Squad fell into the consolation bracket. The afternoon game on Friday saw the B’s defeat Notre Dame Sherman Oaks 17-1 and on Saturday leading host Segerstrom 12-4 before play was suspended in the third quarter due to a chemical imbalance in the pool water. The loss of the Segerstrom facility forced the format for the consolation bracket to change. The squad went on to lose to Clovis 9-8 on Saturday evening but rebounded on Sunday to defeat Miramonte (Orinda) 12-7. No final lower standings were issued.

For the tournament, Skylar Kidd led the team with 12 goals followed by Lauren Short and Hannah Carver each with 10. Charlotte Riches led in assists and Kidd was the steal leader. Haley Parness did a fine job in the cage and had an impressive 5-meter penalty shot save against Campolindo in Friday’s contest.

Recent summer league scores: B team lost to Foothill 8-7 on July 10 while this past Monday, the A team crushed Newport Harbor 11-5. The 50th Junior Olympics is set for Orange County with the boys from July 20-23 and the girls July 25-28. Finals at Irvine’s Woollett Center.



LBHS Boys Water Polo

The boys squad finished 11th out of 48 teams in the State Tournament with Mater Dei taking the title. Laguna defeated Costa Mesa 12-2 and Granite Bay 17-5 on Friday at Costa Mesa’s pool. On Saturday, July 13, the Breakers lost to Menlo 8-4 but went on to defeat Dana Hills 7-5 at Foothill High School. Sunday’s games were at Newport Harbor, where Laguna lost to Sacred Heart Prep (Atherton) 9-8 but bounced back to crush Mira Costa 10-4.

Final top 20: 1 – Mater Dei, 2 – Huntington Beach, 3 – Orange Lutheran, 4 – Woodbridge, 5 – Corona del Mar, 6 – Bellarmine, 7 – Foothill, 8 – Menlo, 9 – Palos Verdes, 10 – Sacred Heart Prep, 11 – Laguna Beach, 12 – Mira Costa, 13 – Dana Hills, 14 – San Ramon Valley, 15 – St Francis, 16 – De la Salle, 17 – Monte Vista, 18 – Long Beach Wilson, 19 – Los Alamitos, 20 – Santa Barbara. Fall season starts Aug. 12.



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