LAGUNA BEACH If the boys water polo playoffs started earlier this week, Laguna Beach and its intriguing mix of youth and experience would have been part of the Elite 8 in Division 1. The Breakers showed Wednesday that they’re motivated to keep their spot.
Freshmen Logan McCarroll and William Kelly each scored in the final 4 1/2 minutes to help Laguna Beach collect a much-needed 12-10 victory against visiting Orange Lutheran in an exclusion-filled match.
Laguna Beach, sixth in Division 1, bounced back from a 9-8 loss against unranked Damien on Tuesday to score the final two goals against the rebuilding Lancers.
McCarroll snapped a 10-10 deadlock by catching a dry cross-pass by James Nolan in front of the cage for a short-range strike with 4:22 left in the fourth.
Kelly scored off an assist by Zach Cord on the man-advantage with 2:11 left, generating a second round of “He’s a freshman!” chant from the Breakers faithful. McCarroll received the same chant earlier in the period.
The heroics from the freshmen supported senior co-captain Colton Gregory, who scored a match-high five goals and drew eight exclusions.
“I would love to be Division I and show that Laguna, we’re not just (a powerful) girls program,” Gregory said. “The guys are here to play. … We want to be the best team we can be.”
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