Breakers not fazed by tough schedule

Breakers Roundup

Laguna Beach boys' water polo team plays five matches in five days, going 4-1 against top-notch competition.

September 22, 2011|By Mike Sciacca

Five games in a five-day period didn't seem to faze the Laguna Beach boys' water polo team during the past week.

The Breakers went 4-1 during that run, which included competing at the inaugural Santa Barbara Tournament before taking on Mira Costa on Tuesday in a key battle between two of the top-rated teams in CIF Southern Section Division 3.

Laguna started its five-game schedule in Santa Barbara on Sept. 16. The Breakers dropped their opening tournament game to Vista, the top-ranked team in the CIF San Diego Section, but came back to win three straight matches. They defeated Sacred Heart Prep of Palo Alto (13-5), Royal (11-5) and Santa Barbara, 9-8, in the ninth-place game.


Mater Dei, the top-ranked team in CIF-SS Division 1, won the tournament.

In a key, Division 3 game Tuesday that pitted Laguna against Mira Costa, the No. 1-ranked Breakers downed the fifth-ranked Mustangs, 18-7. Nolan McConnell netted eight goals with four assists and four steals, Camron Hauer had five goals, two assists and three steals and Riley Thomas three goals, two assists and four steals. Tommy Renner, Nicky Brunner and Samer Alkateb all scored once. Alkateb also had an assist and three steals. Erik Henrikson had 13 saves and also had two steals and one assist.

Laguna, which improved to 5-1, bolted to a 6-0 first-quarter lead and was up, 10-2, by the half.

"We knew going into the Santa Barbara Tournament that we would get four high-level games and that is exactly what we got," Laguna Coach Ethan Damato said. "Although we lost our first game and did not finish as highly as we would have liked, we had a goal of going 3-1 in the tournament and that is what we did. We beat three good teams and came back a better team with a better idea of where we need to improve.

"We played very well on both ends of the pool against Mira Costa. The guys were fired up for a divisional game and came out strong in the first half. Camron Hauer had a great game."

The Breakers are competing Friday and Saturday ) at the South Coast-Newport Harbor Tournament. The tournament, which began Thursday is being played at serval high school pools. The Breakers are the No. 2 seed in their bracket, which is headed by Mater Dei. Also in the bracket is Capistrano Valley, Vista, Northwood, San Clemente, Granite Hills and Buena Park. Games will be played at the Capo Valley pool.

Laguna placed ninth at last year's tournament.

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