SANTA ANA- Quentin Buchman’s career game (7G, 1A) powered No. 4 Santa Margarita (2-0, 7-3) to a 12-7 victory over Trinity League rival No. 7 Mater Dei (3-2, 9-4) on Thursday. The Eagles extended their win streak to three games and remain perfect in league play, while the Monarchs have dropped two of their last three games.
“We came out and knew [Buchman] was going to be a problem,” said Mater Dei head coach Johnny Rodriguez. “We had a couple different game plans in case one didn’t work. If plan ‘A’ didn’t work we went to plan ‘B’ then plan ‘C.’ That was really the only thing. If we take [Buchman] out of the game, I don’t see where we have any problems.”
The Eagles got rolling in the first quarter off Buchman’s two first quarter goals and Jack Fisher’s added netter, giving Santa Margarita an early 3-0 lead. However, the second quarter saw the Monarchs strike back with two goals apiece from Nick Sando and Zach Johsz, which tied the game at four at halftime.
“A tale of two halves,” said Santa Margarita head coach Adam Guy. “Hats off to Mater Dei, they came out ready to play. We got up on them a little bit early and put it in neutral in the second quarter.”
Matt Ury’s first goal of the season came at the start of the third quarter, which ignited the Eagles bench and a six-goal scoring spree that gave the Eagles a comfortable 10-4 lead heading into the fourth quarter. However, the Monarchs didn’t go quietly. They brought the game back within five with three goals in the fourth frame, but lost 12-7.
“I was proud of the way we fought, being down,” Rodriguez said. “It wasn’t fun getting to that point but we never gave up. Fought all the way through.”
In addition to Buchman’s eight points, the Eagles received offensive contributions from Fisher (2G, 2A), Nicholas Parrino (1G, 1A), Ryan You (1G) and Ury (1G). Chase Lynch held a slight edge in faceoffs, winning 13 of 23. Chad Cobb was a major factor in net, notching eight saves between the pipes.
“Towards the end of the first half, we weren’t really playing as a team,” Cobb said. “At half we brought it in and talked about playing as a family and I felt like my defense really helped me out with knocking down most of the shots.”
Sean Waterman led the Monarchs with four points (1G, 3A). Sando (3G), Johsz (2G), and Jack Irvin (1G) rounded out Mater Dei’s offense. As a team, they picked up 21 ground balls and had 27 total shots. Sean Homsy recorded 14 saves.
Mater Dei will look to get back in the win column with a home match on Monday against Oaks Christian LA (9-2) at 5 p.m. Meanwhile, Santa Margarita will look for their fourth win in a row, and to avoid a “trap game” against Trinity rival JSerra (0-4, 1-9).
“What we tell our kids is that we’ve got to respect our opponents as much as we respect ourselves,” Guy said.