The Laguna Beach High boys’ volleyball team got a nice break from Orange Coast League play, as well as a good challenge, Monday night when the Breakers hosted El Modena.
The Breakers topped the Vanguards, 25-19, 19-25, 25-19, 25-16.
El Modena is ranked No. 8 in the CIF Southern Section Division II coaches’ poll; Laguna Beach is No. 2.
“I hope to able to repeat this type of match during our league season in the coming years," Coach Lance Stewart said. “It’s good for us. It’s nice to get a little bit of competition heading into CIF. No disrespect to our league, but it’s down a little bit this year.
“We responded well in Game 3. Each person’s got to take care of their responsibility, and if they do, we’re tough."
Travis Woloson had a match-high 14 kills for Laguna, Scottie Chapel added 12 and Reed Thompson had 10, along with 2.5 blocks.
Chapel had a team-high 12 digs and junior Robbie McKnight had 21 assists.
“Everyone stepped up and started playing more consistently," Woloson said of ending the match strong. “I think we’re starting to click, but we still have a long ways to go."
The Breakers eased past Costa Mesa, 25-15, 25-13, 25-11, on Tuesday night to improve to 4-0 in league. Chapel had 10 kills and junior Alec Burk added seven.
Laguna Beach (14-7) played Godinez on Thursday and plays at Calvary Chapel on Tuesday before another good nonleague test at Huntington Beach on April 30.
The Breakers went from their best Orange Coast League win of the season to their worst loss.
After taking down first-place Calvary Chapel, 6-3, on Friday at Orange Coast College, Laguna came back only to fall to previously winless-in-league Godinez, 11-7, in the rain at home Tuesday
Laguna remains in fourth place in league with a 3-4 mark. And Coach Jeff Sears had a talk with his seniors after Tuesday’s loss.
“That’s what happens when seniors don’t come to play," he said of the loss. “You look for leadership; that’s kind of what we’re expecting out of them."
Upstart Godinez jumped out to a lead after scoring three runs in the third, then put it away with four more runs in the sixth with rain falling off and on.
The Breakers rallied in the seventh as Raphael Vickers, Chris Paul and Shane Selfridge all had doubles.
That led to two runs, but the Breakers couldn’t get closer.
Michael Maxsenti was two for four for Laguna Beach, and Stevie Contursi had a solo home run. The Breakers wore pink in the game and also raised money for breast cancer awareness.
Laguna Beach (12-9) is now 0-4 in home league games this year.
“We don’t come to play at home right now," Sears said. “If you can’t play in this yard, in this beautiful setting, you can’t play. That’s the bottom line. You’ve got to be able to win in this yard."
The Breakers play at Godinez today and they’re on their league bye next week. They’re at Downey in a nonleague doubleheader at 4 and 7 p.m. Tuesday.
The Breakers are looking forward to a league showdown against their toughest competition, Costa Mesa, on Wednesday at home. They got past Estancia this week in a dual meet. Scores were 125-45 (girls) and 115-53 (boys).
Laguna’s girls won every event, with a standout performance by sophomore Yoshi Andersen in the 200 individual medley (2 minutes 22.67 seconds) and the 100 free (57.32 seconds).
On the boys’ side, the Breakers took every event but two.
Sophomore Nolan McConnell was first in the 100 free (52.22) and 100 back (1:00.89), while Samer Alkateb placed first in the 200 free (1:58.76) and second in the 500, in 5:30.24.
The Breakers are expecting their toughest competition from the Mustangs, Coach Kari Johnson said, in their final dual meet before league preliminaries and finals May 4 and 6.
“We would really like to go into league [finals] as the first-place team," Johnson said.
“We have been training all season to win league on both sides for back-to-back championships. I believe we have a deep team this year and are capable of being victorious."
TRACK AND FIELD
Laguna hosted Estancia in a dual meet Thursday and now prepares for its own key dual meet against Costa Mesa, also on Wednesday at Laguna Beach High.
The Breakers are defending league champions on the boys’ side.
Last year, Laguna beat Costa Mesa in the girls’ dual meet, only to fall short at league finals.
Laguna will also be at the O.C. Championships meet Saturday at Mission Viejo High.
Coach Aaron Talarico was happy with the results, even if only one was official.
The Breakers faced a couple of Division IV opponents earlier this week and pulled out a 10-8 victory over Whitney on Monday. On Tuesday, the Breakers were leading St. Margaret’s, 8-3, when the rains came.
Talarico said he is unsure if the match will be completed at a later date.
“These two matches couldn’t have [gone] any better, really," Talarico said.
“We’ve had a tough season, with som many losses, but they’ve been able to pick themselves back up."
Mikey Rubel and Teague Hamilton, who are competing at the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament that began Thursday, swept in doubles against Whitney for a key boost.
Benito Romeo was also competing in singles for Laguna at Ojai, but he fell in the opening round to Christopher Lord of Brentwood, 6-1, 6-2.