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By Steve Breazeale and Victor Carno

Dolphins Girls Volleyball Sweeps Tritons to Claim League Title
In a season filled with changes, winning remained a constant for the Dana Hills girls volleyball team throughout their 2013 South Coast League run. On Monday the Dolphins repeated as league champions and ensured an undefeated league season by defeating visiting San Clemente in three sets, 25-17, 25-22, 25-16.

The Tritons (12-12, 6-2) defeated every other South Coast League team this season, but lost twice to Dana Hills. San Clemente finished second in league.

The Dolphins (22-6, 8-0 league) had to deal with an ever shifting lineup and a coaching change midway through the season. Several players would float in and out of the Dolphins rotation on a nightly basis, due to commitments to club and national teams. When former head coach Bryce Baum departed, assistant Tim Layton stepped in and attempted to mesh together whatever pieces he had. The result was a winning effort.

The Dolphins lineup against the Tritons on Monday exemplified the mix and match style. While standout senior outside hitter Tia Scambray remained a constant presence in the rotations, the Dolphins relied on several players to get past San Clemente, who could have won a share of the league title with a win.

San Clemente jumped out to a 12-9 lead in the first set but an 8-2 run by the Dolphins put the home team out in front. Junior middle blocker Kendall Smith led a Dolphins defensive effort up front during the run, providing key blocks. The Dolphins closed out the set on a 7-0 run.

The Tritons best chance at winning a set came in the second. After battling back and forth with the Dolphins the Tritons held a slim 20-19 edge until Scambray recorded two consecutive kills to give Dana Hills a lead they would not let go of. Dana Hills won the closely contested second set 25-22.

The Tritons were in the mix throughout the first two sets, but the third set was all Dana Hills. Scambray recorded six of her game-high 19 kills during the third and San Clemente had six unforced errors as the Dolphins coasted to a 25-16 set win and the league championship.

San Clemente sophomore outside hitter Cali Hoye and senior Taylor Brubaker led the team with nine kills each.

Tesoro Proves Too Much for Tritons Football in 30-14 Win
The San Clemente football team started out strong against visiting Tesoro Friday, but eventually fell in a 30-14 South Coast League loss.

For a while it looked like the Tritons (2-7, 0-3 league) might pull an upset when they jumped out to an early 14-0 lead. Memories of last year’s come from behind fourth quarter triumph started to creep in. But a quick rally by the Titans (7-2, 3-1) erased any hopes of an upset and handed the Tritons their seventh straight loss.

San Clemente’s opening drive ended in a touchdown pass from senior quarterback Loren Applegate to junior tight end Cole Harlow five minutes into the first quarter.

San Clemente followed that touchdown up with another score moments later when senior Collin Zines returned a Tesoro fumble 40 yards for a touchdown, giving the Tritons a 14-0 lead.

The momentum took a drastic change in the second quarter when Tesoro’s junior offensive lineman, Nick Fehrenbach, opened up a big gap in the San Clemente defense, allowing junior running back Jon Rivera to run in Tesoro’s first touchdown.

Tesoro then embarked on their scoring spree, which included three unanswered touchdowns and a field goal.

“Tesoro really got into their groove … I’m proud of our guys’ effort, we knew that Tesoro was a good team,” San Clemente head coach Jaime Ortiz said.

The Tritons final game of the season, and last chance to pick up a league win, will come at Trabuco Hills on November 8. –Victor Carno

Tritons Boys Water Polo Set for Rematch with Dolphins
The San Clemente boys water polo played Aliso Niguel on November 5. Results were not available at press time.

The Tritons will look to solidify their second-place standing in the South Coast League with a rematch against first-place Dana Hills on November 7. The Dolphins defeated the Tritons 11-7 on October 22.

Cross Country Teams Look Ahead to CIF
Both the boys and girls San Clemente cross country teams were set to compete at the South Coast League Finals on November 6 at Irvine Regional Park. Results were not available at press time.

The girls squad established themselves as the team to beat in league earlier this year, when they won the South Coast League cluster meet on October 8.

The next race for both the boys and girls teams will be the CIF Prelims at Mt. SAC on November 10.

Girls Tennis Takes to the Desert for CIF Championships
A third-place finish in the competitive South Coast league earned the San Clemente girls tennis team a berth in the CIF-SS Division 1 Championships. The first round was set to take place on November 6. Results were not available at press time. San Clemente was to play Palm Desert, the No. 1 seed out of the Desert Valley League, in the first round. If the Tritons advance they will play the winner of the Campbell Hall-Wild Card “B” winner.

Girls Golf Takes 10th at CIF
The San Clemente girls golf team teed off at the Costa Mesa Golf Club on October 31 as part of the CIF Southern Division Team Championships. The Tritons had only one player shoot in the 70s but had several shoot in the low to mid-80s, earning them a 10th-place overall finish.

Junior Alex Cooper shot a 78 (+8), Isabella Seeburger shot 80 (+10), Madi Wiedeman carded 83 (+13), Juliet Duralde shot 87 (+17), Sarah Duncan also shot 87 (+17) and Olga Mihalik shot 92 (+22). The Tritons team total was 415.

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