Ending a 27-year drought, the Laguna Beach High School boys' volleyball team achieved its long-held goal of winning the CIF Southern Section, Division 2 championship Saturday.
The team performed the feat in style, beating defending champion Westlake in a sweep, 25-19, 25-23, 25-22, at Cypress College.
Saturday was also prom night in Laguna. Team members, ramped up and exhausted, had to hustle home and dress for the big dance.
As senior Travis Woloson said in a classic understatement, "It's an exciting day."
Laguna Beach High School has always had a strong volleyball program but had not won a championship since 1983. That year, the then-Artists took home the third in a string of three consecutive championships. Then the team somehow fell short — for nearly three decades.
So this win was a long time coming.
It was a very sweet victory for coach Lance Stewart, his first as a coach with the boys program.
For Stewart, it was "all about the kids."
And the kids responded to their coach by giving him a huge bear hug on the court.
While savoring this long-overdue achievement, we should also remember to pay tribute to those who have given their lives fighting for our country.
On Memorial Day, it is customary to decorate the graves of U.S. soldiers who died serving their country, a practice that dates back to the post-Civil War era.
In Laguna, the Memorial Day holiday begins with the annual 7 a.m. pancake breakfast at Heisler Park, followed by an 11 a.m. ceremony at Monument Point, and then a band concert after noon on the Main Beach cobblestones.
Memorial Day also marks the unofficial beginning of the summer season, which in Laguna Beach means tourists will soon be flocking to the city's beaches and art lovers thronging the "big three" art festivals.
This will be a weekend of celebration in Laguna.