Youth Scene: Newport grabs runner-up finish

The Newport Lightning Basketball Club's fifth-grade boys' team placed second in last weekend's Big City Sports Great American Bash continuing on a great fall season.

In pool play Saturday, the Lightning beat Rock Solid from Anaheim and NSAA from Los Angeles to advance to the semifinals where they faced All-Time Ballers from the opposing bracket.

The game was tough throughout, but the Lightning prevailed, led by the stellar play of Ben Coffman, Preston Hartsell, JT Murphy and Cole Whitelaw.

In the championship game, the Lightning held tough against a much bigger and faster West Coast Results team with the game going back and forth until the final few minutes and the Lightning coming up short in the finale.

Jason Yasukochi, Morgan Cortens, Jake Griffin, Eann McKasson, Jake Bashore, AJ Stefano, Jack Fairon and Will Black also played extremely well in the tournament.

— Reader submission

13U boys take second

The Newport Lightning Basketball Club boys' sixth-grade team also finished runner-up in the tournament facing some great competition from all over California.

In pool play on Saturday, the Lightning beat West Coast Results and Corona Lakers to advance into the semifinals where they beat HCE in a very close game. Chase Furey, Connor Kincaid, Colin Pipkin and Tyler Flood had tremendous games to get into the finals.

In the finals, they faced NSAA where they eventually lost in a very close game. Max Nanula, Will Rodosky, Zach Blaine and Chase Garbers played key minutes throughout the weekend.

The Lightning teams were coached by Nick Flamson.

— Reader submission

Mariners Christian School Youth Sports Update

Mariners Christian School's sports teams have gotten off to a great start in Christian Athletic League of Orange County play this fall with girls' basketball and boys' flag football and posting impressive victories.

Boys Flag Football

The sixth-grade boys flag football team at Mariners Christian split games this week with crosstown rival Harbor Day School. The Dolphins beat Harbor Day in the first meeting on Tuesday, 24-14.

Seifu Pierce, Richie Simons and Leyton Bond scored touchdowns for the visiting Dolphins. The following day saw the Harbor Day team coming to Mariners and beating the Dolphins in a thriller 28-26. Touchdowns by Seifu Pierce, Leyton Bond kept the Dolphins close, but Harbor Day was just too quick for Mariners and pulled out the win in the fourth quarter.

The Dolphins are now 4-1 on the season with two games left in regular season.

Girls Eighth-Grade Basketball

The eighth-grade girls basketball team squeaked out a narrow 19-18 victory over Calvary Costa Mesa behind the hot shooting of Natalie Ward and Logan Grove.

Grove led all scorers with 8 points. Also leading the Dolphins was Natalie Ward with 5 points, including the crucial free throw in the final seconds of the game to clinch the victory.

It was an excellent win against a tough team.

Girls Sixth-Grade Basketball

Mariner's Christian School's sixth-grade basketball team has recently completed the first half of the season with four games remaining, including the playoffs.

The Dolphins are currently undefeated at 5-0 and have won convincingly.

The most recent game was against Harbor Day on their court and the Dolphins sailed to victory 34-4. The team's great defense helped seal the win.

The young team is coached by parents John Glavinovich and Dan Pelekoudas. The team has improved tremendously in the first five weeks, according to the coaches.

Defense, transition game, enthusiasm and energy are the team's strong points. Hilliary Beall, has been a standout with strong contribution from Kristen Allen. The team has also seen strong play from guards Hannah Graves and Kerri Pelekoudas.

Kelsey Western has been a stalwart on defense. Katie Glavinovich has been a factor on defense as well as passing to open teammates. Jaylee Morse and Caroline Carr have improved tremendously, especially rebounding and shooting.

Noelle Mc Henry has contributed with her defensive play and Katie Ewing has scored baskets in the last two games.

Rebecca Szulaga has been injured and will be returning soon to full practice.

Overall, the girls are having a lot of fun and enjoying their venture into team sports. The team has its final home game Nov. 4 vs Harbor Day.

— Reader submission

AYSO Region 97

Girls' Under 7

Purple Power Girls vs. Red Rainbows

Coaches Pat and Brian kept encouraging, as they watched their Purple Power Girls enter their game with the Red Rainbows strong, leading with a solid kick-off by Lindsey Blanchfield. Serena Pope kept an aggressive power foot on defense, while Ava Rosten showed excellent control with stellar breakaways. Sophia Stewart had her first goal of the season, including multiple goals by Blanchfield, Jenny Cullen, Kylie Matthews and Skylar Wilkison. Elizabeth McMahon executed on defense, and helped close the game strong for the Power Girls.

Boys' Under 7

Gladiators vs. Golden Fireballs

The Gladiators shielded themselves against the blaze of the Golden Fireballs with great teamwork. The Gladiators got their first goal when Jack Del Signore scored off a perfect corner kick by Stewart Hartel. Twins Ian and Zak Robertson exhibited great dribbling and passing skills and the Gladiators continued to pressure the Fireballs. Aidan Brutman scored the second goal for the Gladiators when he followed up a shot on goal by Stewart Hartel.

With Ian and Zak, Ryan Smith, Nicholas Pierce, Riley Reese and Aidan Brutman attacking on offense and Noah Foigelman, Del Signore and Hartel defending the goal, the Fireballs were shut down. The game ended in an explosion of cheers when, in the final seconds of the game, the Fireballs scored their first goal.

Girls' Under 5

Purple Butterflies vs. Ladybugs

Under Coach Pat and Coach Mike leading the team, the Purple Butterflies played with a purpose. Piper Wilkison, Keara Matthews, Meredith Starkenburg and Giana Garcia scored goals. Lucy Duff, Kyla Hardesty and Kaylee Ostler defended well.

— Reader submission

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