St. Margaret's Kevin Cox fires and scores against Corona Del Mar defenders Saturday. Corona Del Mar vs. St. Margaret's in the semi-final U.S. Lacrosse South Division playoff Saturday in Mission Viejo.

St. Margaret's tops CdM in O.C. semifinals


MISSION VIEJO – The first time that St. Margaret’s faced Corona del Mar, the Tartans came up frustratingly short.

That might have carried over to the early stages of Saturday’s U.S. Lacrosse Orange County Championships semifinal as the Tartans fell behind early before receiving a much-needed wake-up call.

“It is not the best to go down initially, but once Kevin (Cox) scored that goal, we knew we were in it,” St. Margaret’s junior Nick Shanks said. “We picked our heads up and kept going.”

Shanks and the Tartans didn’t stop until they had an 8-6 victory over the Sea Kings at Mission Viejo High.

St. Margaret’s will face JSerra for the county championship Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at Tustin High.

“The first couple (of goals allowed), I think we had a little bit of nerves, trouble clearing it and they got some extra possessions,” St. Margaret’s coach Glen Miles said. “Once we settled down and got into our flow, I thought we competed pretty well.”

The Tartans fought back from a 3-0 deficit to score four consecutive goals in the second period to take a 4-3 lead into halftime.

Midway through the third period, CdM’s Max Kline tied the score at 5.

The Tartans then scored three consecutive goals (Sam Harnisch, Zachary Shor and Patrick Fallon) for an 8-5 lead.

“We knew we could play with them,” Shanks said. “There were some key things that we really didn’t capitalize on in the first game (against Corona del Mar), so we worked on them a lot.

“We really didn’t overlook the other opponents, but once we knew we were playing them (CdM), it was time to rock and roll and we knew what to do.”

Jordan Greenhall and Kline had two goals apiece for the Sea Kings.

Shanks scored three goals and added two assists for the Tartans, who were able to put to rest the agony of the first meeting.

“We felt like we had that (first) game,” Miles said. “We were up 5-4 with possession, six minutes left. … I know lacrosse goes back and forth, but it kind of felt like that was ours and we gave it away, so we used that as a confidence-builder.”

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