The Laguna Beach High School girls' water polo team took first place at the 2014 High School State Invitational Championships in Orange County last weekend.
Thirty-two teams from across the state participated in the tournament which ended Sunday.
Laguna opened the tournament July 18 and posted a 12-7 victory over Coronado and a 19-5 beating of Oakdale at Santa Ana Valley High School. The team also won twice Saturday, defeating Los Osos,19-7, and El Toro, 10-2, to reach the tourney semifinals.
Laguna faced San Marcos in the semifinals at Corona del Mar High and came away with a hard-fought 10-7 victory.
That set up a battle against Corona del Mar, which beat Foothill in the other semifinal, in the championship game. The final was close throughout and tied 2-2 at the half, but Laguna scored two goals late to claim a 6-4 victory and the gold medal.
The first-place finish was particularly gratifying for the Laguna team which was playing the tournament without three of its starters: sisters Makenzie and Aria Fischer were playing with the USA Water Polo Women's Senior National and Women's Youth National teams, respectively, in international tournament play, and Taylor Julson was out due to injury.
Most of the team will play next at the Junior Olympics in Northern California which start Thursday and run through Aug. 3.
The Laguna players who teamed to win the High School State Invitational Championships were Bella Baldridge, Haley Evans, Sophia Lucas, Angelique Begay, Caspian Brock, Brighid Burns, Gabi Beran, Ally Jochim, Thea Walsh, Evan Tingler, Mia Salvini, Daniela Lucidi and Taylor Julson. The team was led by Head Coach Ethan Damato and assistant coaches Trevor Lyle and Taylor Dodson.
— Reader submission
The title of the Laguna Open Volleyball girls' 14-Under Tournament went to the team of Lexi McKeown (Aliso Viejo) and Savana Green (Kaneohe, HI.) July 11 at Main Beach in Laguna Beach.
The pair won the single-day tournament by defeating Lauren White (Rancho Santa Margarita) and Daphne Kirsch (Lake Forest) in the tourney final.
Girls' 14U Tournament results
First-place: Lexi McKeown (Aliso Viejo)/Savana Green (Kaneohe, HI.).
Second-place: Lauren White (Rancho Santa Margarita)/Daphne Kirsch (Lake Forest).
Equal third-place: Klaire Thoman (Irvine)/Siena Secrist (Newport Beach); Deborah Brigman (Lake Oswego, OR.)/Breana Edwards (Rainier, OR.).
Equal fifth-place: Sarah Smevog (Corona)/Chloe Edep (Corona); Katie Lukes (San Clemente)/Julia Minier (San Clemente); Eliada Pelehrinis (Tustin)/Athena Pelehrinis (Tustin); Brianna Masoni (Mission Viejo)/Morgan Daly (Laguna Niguel).
9th-through-13th-place: Anna Ward (San Clemente)/Hannah Klein (Corona del Mar); Halle Carballo (Aliso Viejo)/Peri Brennan (Laguna Beach); Cassidy Atchinson (Trabuco Canyon)/Kate Rowland (Dove Canyon); Alexis Durand (Signal Hill)/Samantha Oh (Cerritos); Haley Fry (Irvine)/Kiana Isenberg (Tustin); Maddie Martin (Newport Beach)/Caitlin Purdy (Newport Beach); Lauren Sinclair (Laguna Niguel)/Madison Chi (Irvine); Faith Martin (San Juan Capistrano)/Sydney Stratton (Rancho Santa Margarita); Allison Bain (Huntington Beach)/Samantha Bonner (Huntington Beach); Emily Corbett (Rancho Santa Margarita)/Perry Skenderian (Laguna Beach); Allison Kunkle (Newport Beach)/Kealani Knickerbocker (Huntington Beach); Sophie Wallace (Newport Beach)/Natalie Young (Newport Beach); Reese Simkins (Newport Beach)/Kendall Kipp (Newport Beach); Delaney Fuller (Ladera Ranch)/Dylan Walker (Dana Point); Katelyn Bewley (Trabuco Canyon)/Ella Strenn (Rancho Santa Margarita); Anna Fuschetti (Irvine)/Kendall Dewey (Newport Beach); Morgan Johnson (Temecula)/Avery Stevenson (Sandy, UT.).
From staff reports