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2007-08 High School Sports Year In Review:

Sticking with tradition

Laguna Beach High teams continued to dominate league foes, and had many big runs in CIF, too.

June 20, 2008|By Mike Sciacca

The way the school year began for Laguna Beach High athletics and the way it ended were one and the same: on fire.

Sporting events came to a near halt in October, resumed with full force in November and went on — as usual — the latter-half of the school year.

Below is a listing of key highlights that were reported to the Coastline Pilot during the past year.

  September-December

The big story in the fall wasn’t a result of what took place in athletics.

Rather, it had to do with Mother Nature.

Fallout from the fires and windy conditions that ravaged Orange, San Diego and Los Angeles counties in mid-October affected outdoor athletic practices and events for more than a week. Some games were postponed or rescheduled while others were canceled altogether.

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Once play did resume, several Laguna teams went on to win Orange Coast League championships and earn CIF playoff berths.

The girls’ volleyball team went undefeated in Orange Coast League play — the Breakers have won all 15 league matches since the league’s inception in 2006 — to win another league crown. But bigger things awaited the Breakers a few weeks later.

In late November, Laguna won the CIF Southern Section Division II-AA title for a second consecutive year, sweeping Bishop Montgomery of Torrance in the final.

By defeating the Knights, the Breakers were able to win back-to-back section titles for the first time in school history.

“We believed that we could win the title again but no, I didn’t think we’d sweep everybody,” said senior outside hitter Dana Hutchinson, who had 16 kills and 17 digs in the final. “It’s really cool. This is such a great group of girls, and it’s really special to win this together.”

In fact, Laguna swept its way through the postseason — dominating six opponents — en route to reaching the CIF Southern California Regional final of the CIF State Division III playoffs. But the Breakers ended up one victory shy of the state Division III title match for a second straight year after being swept by host Harvard-Westlake.

Laguna had swept nine opponents overall before meeting CIF-SS Division I-A winner Harvard-Westlake in the regional final.

“Our girls did a fantastic job all year and they were really strong in the playoffs,” Breakers Coach Lance Stewart said.

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