In what has become a spring ritual, Foothill High School is returning to the Southern Division semi-finals. It will be the eighth time in eight years that Foothill has made it at least this far. Top-seeded Foothill High started slow and finished fast Thursday night, dispatching of Great Oak of Temecula, 18-11, in a quarterfinal matchup at Tustin High School.Great Oak, which challenged the Knights physically all night, jumped to a 4-2 first-quarter lead. Foothill, led by attack Nate Marano (Denver), who matched his career high with eight goals, and sophomore middie Matt Harris, who added two goals, responded with eight unanswered goals, to lead 10-6 at halftime.
Marano, facing one imposing defender after another, kept scoring and extended the lead to 16-9 with 8:55 left in the game. Middie Warren Case and attack Nick Matzek continued their season-long steadiness, scoring three goals apiece. Sophomore attack Kevin Kodzis (Holy Cross) added a goal and assist, as did middie Ryan Falbo for the 18-1 Knights. Defensive standouts included Owenn Geis (Gordon) and sophomore Jared Copeland, along with speedy defensive middie Chris Reem. Goalie Hank Lewis had five saves in the second half.
Seven players scored for Great Oak: Dakota Campbell, Alexander Cunningham and Weston Gotuzzo had two goals each; Hunter Campbell, Taylor DeJonge, Adam Yutter and Narric Amezcua also scored. The Wolfpack finished 16-3 and had a 10-game win streak snapped.