High School Roundup: Laguna feels heat in win

The Laguna Beach High girls' tennis team opened its 2013 season in the past week and split its first two matches.

In its opener Sept. 5, the Breakers went to Mission Viejo and handed the host Diablos a 12-6 defeat in a match contested in 100-plus degree temperatures that lasted more than four hours.

Through the first round of play, Laguna won four of six sets. The Breakers clinched the match through the second round. With the win in hand, Coach Don Davis was then able to move around players and experiment with in the Breakers' lineup during the third round.

Laguna sweeps came from No. 2 singles, Ashley Shelton and the No. 3 doubles team of sophomores Nathasha Keces and Ashley Fair. Shelton, who also played doubles last year for the Breakers, won by scores of 6-4, 6-0, 7-3. Keces and Fair picked up 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 wins.

Other singles wins for Laguna came from No. 1 Kira Hamilton (6-4), No. 3 Bailey Jaeger (6-0) and varsity newcomer Anna Heitmann (7-6) also at the No. 1 line.

Senior Brooke Michaels, the team's No. 1 singles player and Orange Coast League champion last year, is teamed at No. 1 doubles with junior Madeline Loomis. The duo won two matches, 6-2, 6-0. The No. 2 team of seniors Sarah Nederlander/Stephanie Tat had one win (6-0).

Michaels, Nederlander, Tat and Nicole Doiron are serving as team captains the season.

"All the girls fought hard and through the heat," Davis said. "They all competed very well. I tried to mixed things around so the girls didn't have to play three rounds. Right now, though, the key thing for us is to work on finding the right doubles combinations."

In their first home match of the season Tuesday, the Breakers fell, 12-6, to Northwood. Michaels and Loomis won both sets (6-4, 6-2) they played at No. 1 doubles.

"Northwood's a good team and they are strong at the top with their singles," Davis said. "Our doubles teams played very well which was really encouraging."

Laguna played host to Mater Dei in nonleague play Thursday. The score wasn't available at press time.

Next week, the Breakers are home Tuesday to Cerritos and play at Corona del Mar Thursday. Both nonleague matches begin at 3 p.m.


The Laguna Beach boys' and girls' teams opened their season Sept. 6 competing at the Seaside Invitational at San Buenaventura Beach State Park in Ventura.

The Laguna girls placed 11th among 40 teams and finished second among teams in CIF Southern Section Division 4. Pearl Shoemaker's time of 18 minutes 30 seconds topped the Breakers. Other top times were turned in by Eliza Romero (18:35) and Brenna Merchant (18:38).

"I thought we opened the season with some very good performances," Laguna girls' coach Steve Lalim said. "I asked the girls to get out aggressive early in the race, they did. I am proud of the team's efforts in our first meet. A great day."

The Laguna boys' team placed eighth among 25 teams at the invite and Coach Scott Wittkop called the start a "very good opening week."

Junior Cameron Zuziak ran the top time for Laguna at 15:34.2 and senior Casey Koprowski was next at 15:36.7. Other times for the Breakers: sophomore Drake Butler (16:18.1); junior Grant Barton (16:23.9); sophomore Mason Pitz (16:26.9); senior Ian Ring (16:48.2), and junior Liam Corrigan (16:54.2).

A portion of both Laguna teams will next compete Sept. 20 at the Woodbridge Invitational. Several Breakers will compete in Hawaii at the Iolani Invitational Sept. 21, Lalim said.

Girls' Golf

The Breakers played their first match of the season Tuesday and fell, 228-239, to Sage Hill at Aliso Creek Golf Course. Michelle Chen of the Lightning was match medalist with a score of 37 (par 32).

Laguna's top score was turned in by junior MaryKate Quellmalz with a 43. Sophomore Murphy Thompson shot a 44 in her first varsity match and shot 44 which Breakers Assistant Coach Sean Quigley said was a "great debut for her."

In addition, senior Jamie Hendrickson shot a "solid" 49, said Quigley who noted that Laguna's No. 1 player, Jackie McMahon, was not in the lineup Tuesday.

Audrey Curtis shot 51, Leslie Dwight 52, and Hailey McCullogh 60, for the Breakers.

Laguna's team score of 239 bettered by 10 strokes its team score in its 2012 season opener at Aliso Creek, Quigley said.

Quigley said he and Head Coach Scott Finn are impressed by the team's start.

"Overall, we are encouraged with our team's effort as they appear to be making steady progress for this early stage of the season," Quigley said.

Boys' Water Polo

The Breakers bring a No. 4 ranking (CIF Southern Section Division 2) into their 4 p.m. season opener Friday against Villa Park. The Spartans are ranked sixth in the division.

Next week, Laguna also is home for a 4 p.m. Tuesday nonleague match with Claremont. The Wolfpack is ranked No. 9 in Division 2. The Breakers play a 5:30 p.m. nonleague game Thursday at Santa Barbara, then play at the Santa Barbara Tournament Sept. 20-21.

"Well, we are opening the season with four teams in the top 11 in our division," Laguna Coach Ethan Damato said. "We just found out [Wednesday] that our first game of the Santa Barbara Tournament will be against No. 5 Dos Pueblos in the first round. We have some tough challenges in front of us but I think that is what we want.

"In order to be the best, you have to beat the best and we want to prove that we are among the top teams in the division. At the end of the day, we want to win a CIF championship. I think tests like these will help prepare us for where we want to be at the end of the year. Should be a fun week."

CIF Weekly Rankings

Football: Laguna Beach (No. 6, Southern Division)

Boys' Cross-Country: Laguna Beach (No. 4, Division 4)

Girls' Cross-Country: Laguna Beach (No. 4, Division 4)

Boys' Water Polo: Laguna Beach (No. 4, Division 2)

Girls' Volleyball: Laguna Beach (No. 3, Division 1A)

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