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Prep Sports Wrap: La Jolla High School lacrosse teams reach CIF playoffs

La Jolla High School’s mascot is the Viking.
La Jolla High School’s mascot is the Viking.
(Courtesy)

La Jolla High School sent both of its lacrosse teams to the CIF playoffs (girls and boys each cleared the CIF quarterfinals the weekend of May 10), and several other teams have already brought home titles. Here is a wrap-up of the Viking’s spring sports season:

Boys Lacrosse

Still holding on to an undefeated season, the “senior driven” boys lacrosse team defeated Poway High School in the CIF quarterfinals 13-5 on May 11, and proceed to the semi-finals May 15 (beyond La Jolla Light deadline). Should they continue their winning streak, the championship game is 5 p.m. Saturday, May 18 at San Dieguito Academy High School, 2800 East Fourth St., National City (opponent to be determined).

“They have done so much already, they should be proud, the championships would be icing on the cake,” coach Kyle Smedley said. “We want them to be proud of themselves.”

Of the 10 seniors on the team, nine have been playing for La Jolla High School since they were freshmen. “They have been a huge help for the coaches, given their experience and confidence,” Smedley said. Senior captains include: Morgan Watson, Nate Ryan, Cavan Walsh, Thomas Evans and Oliver Wintringer.

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As such, they have developed the ability to read the field and the opponents for themselves and make changes accordingly. “That was our big message: we want them to see their field for themselves instead of relying on to yell from the sidelines. It’s a freedom and a challenge. No one runs off the field worried about what the coach will say,” he said. “They work hard but keep it light, we want them to have fun.”

Girls Lacrosse

Seeded No. 2 in the Open Division, the girls lacrosse team also cleared the first round of CIF, when they defeated Coronado High School 12-4 in the quarterfinals May 10, and proceed to the semi-finals May 15 (beyond La Jolla Light deadline) against La Costa Canyon. Should they leave victorious, the championship game is 5 p.m. Saturday, May 18 at San Dieguito Academy High School, 2800 East Fourth St., National City (opponent to be determined).

And for the team and coach Kitty Cullen, the semi-finals represent a hurdle they would like to get over. “We played against LCC twice in semis, and lost both times,” Cullen said. “So that is a streak we would like to break, and make it to the championships.”

She said her three “awesome” seniors have stepped up to fill in for the eight seniors that graduated last year, and that she has been relying heavily on Reagan Jetter and goalie Ari Conboy.

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“This team fights and works really hard, we have had a lot of one-goal games all season long,” Cullen said. “One of their biggest strengths is they don’t give up, they are always fighting and always going hard. They have worked hard to get where they’ve gotten.”

Track and Field

“We had another very successful evening with the League Championships,” athletic director Paula Conway posted on the Vikings website. “Of the 32 events contested, La Jolla High brought home nine League Champions!”

She noted the following athletes for their achievements in their respective fields: Sierra Roberson in the 400 meters; Nadia Urmanov in the pole vault; Matteo Babic in the 110 hurdles and the 300 hurdles; Cyrus Varnum in the Discus; Lukas Stritzker in high jump; Jackson Scherrer in the pole vault; and Evan Brown in the long jump and triple jump.

Swimming

On the Swim/Dive team, sophomore Makenna Sammons is the Division 2 Dive Champion, Conway reported.

Other athletes of note include: Jordan Mariani, third place in diving; Grant Pauker, fourth place in diving; Shauna Franke, Natalie DiMeo, Jensine Bugelli and Paige Olson who collectively placed third place in the 200 Free Relay; Gyula Kangiszer, Dominic Scurio, Cole Atwell and Gabe Sepulveda-Sanders, who collectively placed third in the 200 Free Relay, Paige Olson for winning the 50 Freestyle Consolation Finals, and to Jensine Bugelli for winning the 100 Butterfly Consolation Finals.

Boys Tennis

The winners of another Western League Team Championship title, the boys tennis team ended its season 13-2-1.

Members of the team include: Edward Cheney, Nicolas Cheney, Raphael Freund, Lachlan MacDonald, Gabriel Maher, Ryan Phillips, Sam Rudenberg, Conner Arnold, Carson Kellogg, Eric Na, Tyler Simpson, Jagger Bisharat, Lucas Cowling and Marc Kuo.

Baseball

Narrowly claiming a winning season, the La Jolla Vikings baseball team ended its regular league play 14-13. But despite claiming more wins than losses, they will not be proceeding to playoffs.

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“We showed significant improvement from 2018,” coach Gary Frank said. “We scored 62 more runs than we did a year ago. We improved our batting average by 66 points. We hit 15 more extra base hits, and we made 20 fewer errors on defense.”

Over the course of the season, coach Frank became the winningest coach in La Jolla High School history. Leading the way to more wins than any other coach, the title was claimed following a victory over Mission Bay High School April 29.

He added, with 14 of 17 players returning in 2020, “The future looks bright.” <end_bug_diamond>


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