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Spring notes: Beckman follows familiar path to lacrosse final

STAFF REPORTS

The Beckman girls lacrosse team is no stranger to late-season success.

For the third consecutive season, the Patriots have found their way back to the finals of the U.S. Lacrosse Orange County Championships.

Beckman defeated top-seeded Mater Dei in the semifinals Saturday and will face Foothill in the O.C. final on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at Tustin High.

“Throughout this season, we had our ups and downs,” Patriots coach Kelly Baker said. “We lost to the top three teams (Mater Dei, Foothill, Los Alamitos), but we win when it counts. We make adjustments and they fight for each other. We peak at the right times, I guess.”

At one point this season, the Patriots were 3-4.

The fourth-seeded Patriots showed their never-say-die attitude by rallying from a four-goal deficit against the Monarchs on Saturday.

“We came in as an underdog and we knew we had to believe and that’s all that mattered,” Baker said.

Beckman and Foothill met March 24, with Foothill winning 8-7.

The winner of Wednesday’s game will face the winner of the L.A. final on Saturday at Mira Costa High.

The boys O.C. final between St. Margaret’s and JSerra is also a rematch from earlier this season. The Tartans defeated the Lions, 12-7, on April 4.

- DAMIAN CALHOUN

TRACK AND FIELD

Several Orange County teams made big statements at their league finals last week.

Los Alamitos swept the boys and girls titles at the Sunset League Finals. Canyon accomplished the same feat in the Crestview League.

In the Trinity League, wins by Preston O’Connell in the pole vault, Paul Resong in the 400 meters and Ian Ward in the 300 hurdles helped Servite beat out St. John Bosco, 132-109, for the boys title.

Dominique Ruotolo and Jazmin Moss helped Mater Dei sweep the jumping events as the Monarchs edged Santa Margarita in the girls meet, 122-114.

The league finals also produced several elite performances. Newport Harbor senior Hope Bender’s time of 14.49 at the Sunset League meet leads the county. Aliso Niguel junior Kathryn Plummer produced a county-leading toss of 41-4.75 in the shot put, while Newport Harbor’s Rachelle A La Torre moved to the top of the leaderboard with a 140-3 in the discus.

Garden Grove’s Chris Gonzalez set a Garden Grove League record by going 46-11 in the triple jump.

Valencia’s Nick Coghill’s marks in the shot put (63-1/2) and discus (175-5) at the Empire League Finals broke Esperanza’s Mark Parlin’s league records that had stood since 1991. ...

The CIF-SS Prelims will be held Saturday. Here is where the meets will take place: Division 1, at Trabuco Hills High; Division 2, at Moorpark High; Division 3, at Estancia High; Division 4, at Carpinteria High.

- ANDREW TURNER, Contributing writer

SWIMMING

Ben Burns sat poolside in a wheelchair with his left leg in a cast and his right leg in a brace, but no Orange County swimmer seemed more upbeat last week than the Pacifica junior.

Burns was knocked out of the Empire League prelims after breaking his leg during warm-ups against Valencia the week earlier. The junior varsity freestyler was injured after he accidently kicked a swimmer behind him while doing the breaststroke.

While it was a freak accident, it also was a somewhat common occurrence for Burns.

He was born with a genetic bone disorder in which his bones can break easily. The low-impact nature of swimming gives him an opportunity at athletics.

“I’ve broken almost every bone in my body,” he said. “I’ll just roll with the punches. If I break a leg, hey, I break a leg. It doesn’t bother me. … I am going to swim again.”

The support of teammates helps Burns stay positive. At the Empire League meet at Kennedy, teammates wore white T-shirts with black letters that read, “This one’s for Ben.”

Teammate Ryan Hollingsworth made about 80 of the shirts.

“He had no idea,” Hollingsworth said. “(He was) emotional. … I like Ben. Ben is a nice guy.”

Dana Hills boys used a stellar performance at the South Coast League finals to emerge as a contender for the Division 1 title. The Dolphins also feature a formidable diving contingent led by freshman Jake Greenberg, the top seed for Tuesday’s 11-dive competition at Riverside City College. “We’re excited,” Dolphins coach Matt Rosa said in a text. “Dana Hills has never competed for a team title at CIF.”

- DAN ALBANO

BOYS VOLLEYBALL

First-round matches in the CIF-SS boys volleyball playoffs are tonight.

All matches are set to begin at 7 p.m., however, there have been some changes.

Aliso Niguel’s home match against West Ranch of Stevenson Ranch in Division 2, and Katella’s match against visiting Orangewood Academy in Division 4 will begin at 6 p.m.

In Division 3, Westminster’s home match against San Luis Obispo will begin at 5:30 p.m.

The second round will be Thursday, and the quarterfinals are set for Saturday.

- DAMIAN CALHOUN

WRESTLING

Santa Ana coach Scott Glabb will be among the new class of inductees into the California Wrestling Hall of Fame during a ceremony Saturday at the Laguna Hills Community Center.

Other inductees include Santa Ana College coach Vince Silva, former Calvary Chapel wrestler and state champion Shane Valdez, Bob Walker of Fountain Valley and former Cypress College coach Ray Haas.

Joe Fox, Jim McCrillis, Ralph Stansbury, Karen Tufnell and Jim Warren will all be honored as Lifetime Service Award recipients. For ticket information, call 408-978-9543.

- DAMIAN CALHOUN


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