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By Steve Breazeale
Triton Basketball at Top of Unpredictable League
The South Coast boys basketball league is about as wild, and unpredictable, as one could imagine. But amidst all of the chaos (there are three teams tied for second place) San Clemente (13-8, 3-1 league) did it’s best to separate itself from the pack on Jan. 25.
Playing host to Tesoro, the Tritons opened up a large lead and held on late for a 60-53 win.
San Clemente led 34-19 at the half, thanks to a strong defensive effort and the sharp shooting of guard Blake Birmingham. San Clemente even led by as many as 20 points in the third quarter, but Tesoro came roaring back in the fourth.
The Titans opened the quarter with a 12-0 run, but San Clemente was able to extinguish the comeback with clutch free-throw shooting down the stretch.
An important home league game against Aliso Niguel (14-8, 2-2) on Jan. 27 is up next for the Tritons.
Water Polo Stays Perfect in League
The San Clemente girls water polo team kept its offense firing on all cylinders on Jan. 23 and 24 in convincing South Coast League wins over Trabuco Hills and Mission Viejo, respectively.
The first-place Tritons (10-10, 4-0) had an impressive 11 different players score goals in a 17-3 win over Trabuco Hills, led by Tera Richardson’s four-goal and three-assist effort. San Clemente defeated Mission Viejo 12-4.
Triton Wrestlers Place Third at Home Tournament
The San Clemente wrestling team placed third at its own tournament, the SC Rotary Tournament, on Jan. 21. San Clemente High School played host to 32 teams from across the Southland, and the Tritons bested regional powers like Vista Murrieta and league rival Aliso Niguel.
Individual Triton place-winners include: Joey Nonaca, Matt Fabrikant, Keoni Chan, Hunter Gallaher, Masious Vaughn, Kyle Marshall and Austin Moore. Both Moore and Marshall placed first in their divisions.
Chargers Snap Triton Soccer’s Unbeaten Streak
The San Clemente boys soccer team’s seven-match unbeaten streak came to an end on Jan. 18, as the Tritons lost on the road to El Toro 1-0.
Brandon Pariso scored the lone goal for El Toro, and goalie Mac Hutchins made seven saves.
With the win, El Toro (7-8, 3-1) jumped into sole possession of first place in the South Coast League standings. San Clemente (9-4-5, 2-1-1) sit in second place.
The Tritons will travel to play Mission Viejo on Jan. 27.
Girls Soccer Loses Close Game
Despite a 13-save effort by goalie Lauren Brzkcy, the San Clemente girls soccer team couldn’t overcome a first-half goal in a 1-0 South Coast League loss to Tesoro on Jan. 24.
Brzykcy’s 13 saves were a season-high, but Tesoro’s Anna Augustini found the back of the net in the opening 40 minutes and the Titans held on for the win.
San Clemente will travel to play Dana Hills on Jan. 26.