COSTA MESA – The Newport Harbor boys lacrosse team may not be having its best season, but with a narrow 8-7 win against 11th-ranked Edison on Wednesday at Estancia High School, the No.20 Sailors may have kept their slim playoff hopes alive. Wednesday’s win over the Chargers gave the Sailors’ their first win against a higher-ranked opponent this season.
The Sailors have three games remaining, starting tonight at No.9 Mater Dei at 7 p.m. and league games against Marina and Los Alamitos next week. It’s not guaranteed that the Sailors (4-10, 2-6) can make the playoffs if they win out their remaining games, but Newport Harbor coach Mark Todd is happy with how his team played.
“Fortunately we played the last three quarters better than the first quarter,” Todd said.
Edison started the first quarter hot thanks to three straight goals, two coming from Connor Grief and another coming from Mikey Balding. The Sailors didn’t get on the board until the 3:26 mark of the first quarter, when Jared Rabin found the back of the net.
After the first quarter, the Sailors turned it around on Edison, as Rabin and Chandler Pearce helped make the score 4-4 at halftime. Rabin, a junior who finished with three goals, provided the lone goal from either team in the third quarter, and the Sailors led 5-4 going into the fourth quarter.
“Jared Rabin has been doing what he’s been doing for us all year. Playing hard, playing consistent,” Todd said.
Newport Harbor extended its lead to 7-4 with goals from Patrick Lynch and Alex Pearce, but just like Friday’s game against Los Alamitos, Edison slowly but surely chipped away at Newport Harbor’s lead, one goal at a time. The Chargers used goals from Tommy West and Dustin Nelson to trim Newport Harbor’s lead to 7-6 with 3:22 left.
Edison caught the Sailors at 7-7 on a goal from Evan Siegel at the 2:02 mark of the fourth quarter, but nine seconds after that, Edison was called for a tripping penalty leaving them with a man down for a minute.
A minute is all the Sailors needed, as Alex Pearce scored his second goal of the game giving Newport Harbor an 8-7 lead at the 1:37 mark of the fourth quarter. Edison had one last chance to tie it and send it to overtime, but an errant pass gave the Sailors the win and halted Edison’s seven-game winning streak.
“I knew it was going to be a close game, and we [Edison] made it a close game,” Edison coach Rich Clayton said.
Rabin led the Sailors with three goals, Chandler and Alex Pearce both had two goals with Chandler adding two assists, while Lynch chipped in one goal. Goalie Dean Carden had 11 saves for Newport Harbor.
“I think we all came together and played really well as a team. Everyone went out and played 100 percent and played how we know how to play,” Rabin said.
Edison (10-4, 4-1) was led by Grief who had two goals. AJ McLean, Balding, West and Siegel each had one goal while goalie Josh Lightman had nine saves. Lightman went in for Jake Austin (six saves) in the second quarter who appeared to have left with a concussion.
Edison’s next game is Friday at home against Los Alamitos at 6 p.m. A win for the Chargers puts them in control of their own destiny in regards to the Sunset League championship. A loss creates a three-way tie way with the Griffins and Huntington Beach (5-2 in league) with one week to play.