In an early season battle between two of the top-ranked teams in CIF Southern Section Division 2, second-ranked Corona del Mar was able to get the best of third-ranked Laguna Beach, 25-23, 25-16, 25-18 on Tuesday.
Jackson Pries, who transferred to Laguna Beach two years from Corona del Mar, led the Breakers (11-6) in kills with 10 in the nonleague match. Weston Barnes had eight kills in the opening game and ended up with 10 kills.
“Tonight was a tough loss to a big rival,” Laguna Coach Scott Panaro said. “We played well in game one but were unable to reproduce the same level of play in games two and three. CdM made some good blocking adjustments and was able to slow us down.”
Panaro coached at CdM from 2002 to 2004 and said he is good friends with Sea Kings Coach Steve Conti.
“Tonight’s match is a likely CIF playoff preview,” Panaro said. “CdM is a very well coached team. It is great to play strong competition to see what we need to do to improve. They definitely exposed some of our weaknesses tonight. We have got a lot to improve on, but I am confident we will get it done with good old-fashioned hard work.”
Both Laguna and CdM competed last weekend at the Orange County Championships in the 24-team, Division 1 bracket. The Breakers finished tied for third and the Sea Kings reached Monday’s final, where they lost to rival Newport Harbor.
Laguna went 4-2 at the Orange County Championships. The Breakers were eliminated from title contention after a semifinal loss to Newport Harbor. Breakers outside hitter Austin Hilleman was named to the all-tournament team.
Laguna began its quest for another Orange Coast League title on Tuesday by sweeping visiting Estancia, 25-14, 25-15, 25-14. The defending champion Breakers have now won 60 straight league games and haven’t lost a league match since falling in five sets at Calvary Chapel in April of 2008. Jake Hexburg and Lucas Capobianco both had seven kills and Grifan Fair had 15 assists and five digs for the Breakers.
Panaro said his team gave a “strong performance” against the Eagles.
“It was great to get our first league victory under our belt,” he said.
Laguna senior Marina Paul has been named to the All-CIF Southern Section Division 4 team. A two-time All-Orange Coast League selection and this year’s league MVP, Paul has been the Breakers’ leading scorer and team MVP the past two years.
Paul, who was a four-year varsity performer, will play women’s soccer next year at Georgetown University.
Girls’ Water Polo
Seniors Yoshi Andersen and Melena Masson have been named to the All-CIF Southern Section Division 1 first team.
Four Laguna players were named to the 2012 All-Orange Coast League Team. Senior Joseph Rousseau and junior Reece Barton were named first team and senior Brogan O’Bryan and sophomore Taylor Davidson were named to the second team.
Juniors Cole Kesler and Jake Dalke have been named co-MVP for the 2012 All-Orange Coast League, Laguna Coach Bret Fleming said. Kesler averaged 11.3 points and 2.5 assists per game and Dalke averaged 12.1 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game.
Kesler and Dalke are among five Breakers to make the all-league team. First-team members included senior Brandon Lewis — who averaged 12 points per game and set the school’s single-season record for three-point shots with 85 — and senior Derek Reigel. Sophomore Noah Blanton was named to the second team.
Track and Field
Both Laguna varsity teams started Orange Coast League competition March 15 and scored victories against visiting Estancia.
In the girls’ 81-32 win over the Eagles, the following Laguna athletes won their events: Audrey Rodriguez (1,600 meters); Lesly Aguilar (discus, shot put); Marlee Grosher (long jump); Janie Crawford (triple jump); Natlie Kimball (400 meters); Brielle Budroe (800 meters); Grace Clark (3,200 meters).
The Laguna boys posted an 89-17 win over Estancia. Breakers to win events were: Stone Riff (1,600 meters); Tyler Davidson (shot put); Tyler Nichols (200 and 400 meters); Avery Crowl (long jump); Nathan Lancaster (100 meters); Spencer Anderson (110 and 300 hurdles); Mike Lee (800 meters); Nico Bevilaqua (triple jump); Jeff White (3,200 meters).
The Breakers also had an OCL League meet against Calvary Chapel on Thursday, but the scores weren’t available at press time.
Next week, Laguna takes on Saddleback in an OCL meet at 3 p.m. Thursday at Laguna.
The Breakers took on Mission Viejo in a nonleague meet on Thursday, but the scores weren’t available at press time.
Next week, Laguna takes on Orange Coast League rivals Godinez and Calvary Chapel at 6 p.m. on Wednesday at Santa Ana Valley High.
Next week, the Breakers face Calvary Chapel at Mile Square Park in Fountain Valley at 3 p.m. Monday and travel to take on Costa Mesa at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at Mesa Linda Golf Course.
The Breakers faced Costa Mesa on Thursday, but the score wasn’t available at press time.
Laguna has two league matches on tap next week, beginning with a Tuesday match at Saddleback. On Thursday, the Breakers travel to Estancia to begin the second half of the league schedule. Both league matches start at 3:15 p.m. In between, they’ll host Whitney in a 3 p.m. nonleague match Wednesday.