High Schools: Sum season for Eagles

Rashad Davis makes the Estancia High boys' basketball team look big.

At 6-foot-7, Davis is big, but the Eagles' roster lacks size.

Eight players are all the Eagles suit up. Only five get to play at one time on the court, but eight is a small number for a varsity team.

Depth has been issue after the Eagles lost four players, three of which they counted upon for minutes this season. Coach Agustin Heredia said Matt Jarmacz, Kevin Carvajal, Levi Stillman and Jazz Hill are no longer on the team.

"They saw people here and they thought they weren't going to play," Heredia said was the reason the players left the program.

The Eagles have moved on since the departures and they have stayed competitive despite the roster size.

Last week, Estancia picked up its first victory in Orange Coast League play. The Eagles beat Godinez, 44-34, and the same player who has led the way for most of the season, did so again.

Davis finished with 14 points, 13 rebounds and two blocks. Estancia (10-9, 1-1 in league) has heavily depended on their biggest player, Davis, a senior center.

"The game plan is pretty simple," Heredia said. "Get the ball inside [to Davis]. We're not a very good shooting team. We just kind of rely on [Davis] to put the ball in the basket. Ben [Beck] will get hot every once in awhile. Hopefully somebody else can put [the ball] in the hole."

One good sign for Heredia must have been seeing almost half of his team score in double-figures in the Eagles' last game.

Junior forward Chad Fackler recorded 11 points against Godinez, while Beck, a junior guard, contributed nine, and sophomore guard Martin Harry eight. The Eagles will need balanced scoring if they expect to finish in the top three in league, which they have accomplished in Heredia's first four seasons at the helm.

"Laguna [Beach] is the team to beat," Heredia said of the school that has won the Orange Coast League since its inception in 2006-07. "We want to … go to the playoffs."

Coach Juan Mares hopes Rudy Reyes can protect the goal again for the Newport Harbor boys' soccer team.

Mares said the goalkeeper has missed action in the Sailors' past two Sunset League matches with a back injury. Newport Harbor has allowed three goals in each match, each resulting in losses.

"Probably because [he's been] overused," Mares said could be attributed to Reyes' latest setback.

Mares said Reyes was out the second half of league play last season after breaking his clavicle during a contest.

The Sailors (8-8-3, 1-3-0 in league) are off to a better overall start than last season.

"We've won more games than we did all of last year already," said Mares, whose team finished 6-12-3 last season.

Mares said Reyes' return might come Wednesday. The Sailors play host to Huntington Beach in a league contest at 4:45 p.m.

The Estancia boys' soccer team didn't win much last season during Orange Coast League play.

The Eagles haven't won at all two matches into league action this season, but they haven't lost either.

Estancia tied Laguna Beach, 2-2, and defending league champion Godinez, 1-1, last week. For the most part, Coach Robert Castellano likes how his team is playing. The Eagles (6-3-3, 0-0-2 in league) are strong on defense and they're controlling possession.

"We're doing everything right, except … scoring goals," Castellano said.

"We've been unlucky in front of the goal."

Estancia will need to produce goals on Wednesday.

The Eagles play at first-place Saddleback (2-0 in league) at 3 p.m.

"They play a lot like us, very technical," Castellano said of the Roadrunners, who are coming off a 2-1 victory at home against Costa Mesa.

Dominic Bulone has guided three wrestlers to the CIF State finals in his first 12 years at Newport Harbor.

He might coach a fourth to state this season.

Bulone said Ben Nordstrom, a 160-pound senior, has what it takes to make it to Bakersfield, site of the state finals on March 2-3.

"He knows how to win close matches," Bulone said of Nordstrom (17-5), who placed third at the Angel Pena Classic at Irvine High in December and sixth at the ASICS Southern California Challenge at Godinez High this month. "When the stakes are high, he gets the job done."


Twitter: @DCPenaloza

Copyright © 2019, Daily Pilot
EDITION: California | U.S. & World