EL TORO "” For a quarter, the Breakers were able to hang.
But after that, the Corona del Mar High boys’ basketball team was able to pull away Wednesday, earning a 68-31 victory Wednesday in the Orange County North/South Challenge at El Toro High.
Laguna (4-5) was playing without its top scorer, senior Adam Selevan. But the young Breakers did play the Sea Kings tough in the first quarter. A three-pointer by freshman Jake Dalke and a three-point play by sophomore Tyler Masukawa helped Laguna Beach trail only 16-10 after a quarter.
But the Sea Kings outscored the Breakers 18-4 in each of the middle two quarters to put the game away, getting looks seemingly at will around the basket.
Tyler Masukawa finished with a game-high 17 points for the Breakers. Tyler Kesler had five, senior Alex Masukawa had four and Dalke added the three-pointer. Sophomore Derek Reigel also had a basket.
Junior guard Ramon Mejia led CdM (7-3) with 14 points and five steals. The Sea Kings had previously beaten the Breakers, 65-28, on Dec. 15.
The Breakers play in the Century Tournament beginning Saturday at Century High in Santa Ana. They open against Beckman, at 12:15 p.m Saturday.
The tournament continues through Wednesday.
The Breakers are at the Garden Grove Tournament, which also begins Saturday and continues through Wednesday. Laguna Beach opens with a game against Kennedy at 10:30 a.m. Saturday.
Laguna (3-7) hasn’t played since suffering a tough 37-36 loss to Saddleback on Dec. 17. Junior Emily Writer had a team-high 25 points, including three three-pointers. Sam Garner added seven points and Holly Battle and Lola Cowie had two points each.
The Breakers are in the Mission Viejo Tournament. They play El Toro at 4:45 p.m. Monday, host Mission Viejo at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday and Lakeside at 3 p.m. Wednesday. All games are at Mission Viejo High.
In their most recent action, the Breakers fell to a tough Mater Dei team, 4-0, on Dec. 18. Sophomore Alec Williams had four saves, while the defense of Mikey Rubel, Matt Anderson, Travis Sampson and Jonathan Roberts broke up many Monarchs attacks. However, Mater Dei scored all of its goals in the opening half.
“We had 11 guys graduate from last season, and nine of them were starters," Laguna Coach Patrick Coyne said. “We were kind of on the back foot this season from the beginning. But I still went with a difficult preseason schedule, playing some of the top soccer schools in the county and not the state It’s good to be tested in the preseason. I felt in the second half, once they figured out the level of play and the pace of the play, we learned how to hold them back."
Laguna comes back for a home match against Sage Hill on Jan. 4, then it’s right into the Orange Coast League schedule playing host to Costa Mesa on Jan. 8.
“We have a very difficult [league] season," Coyne said. “It ain’t going to be a walk in the park."
Laguna Beach (1-7-2) hasn’t played since a 2-1 loss at JSerra on Dec. 17. Kelsey Peterson scored the Breakers’ goal, assisted by fellow senior Jessie Good-Man.
The Breakers head inland after Christmas for a trio of games. They play at Xavier of Palm Desert at 1 p.m. Monday, then at Indio at 11 a.m. Tuesday. The trifecta concludes with a game at Palm Desert at 11 a.m. Wednesday.
Laguna then has its alumni game Jan. 2.