Newport Harbor Takes Down San Clemente

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NEWPORT BEACH — Even a brief blackout late in the third period Wednesday couldn’t dim No. 13 Newport Harbor, which lit up visiting No. 7 San Clemente for nine goals in the second and third periods en route to a 13-9 victory.

The stadium lights went out with 3:33 to play in the third and the Sailors leading 11-5, causing a 20-minute delay. Newport made it 12-5 after the blackout and led 12-7 going into the fourth quarter.

Aidan Goltz led the Sailors with six goals.

“We played a lot better than we did last year [in a 15-7 loss against San Clemente],” Goltz said. “Honestly, we just played better as a team than we ever have.”

Goltz scored the Sailors’ first three goals, helping keep the teams even at 3-3 in the second quarter. The Tritons took a 5-3 lead, but the Sailors began to shine, rattling off five in a row to take an 8-5 lead into halftime.

After the blackout and the Sailors’ 12-7 advantage, the Tritons scored twice to make it 12-9 in the fourth quarter, prompting a Newport Harbor time out. But the Tritons got no closer. Rhett Farmer added another goal for the Sailors, who celebrated their first win of the season after a long two hours.

“I think the key to today’s game was our second-quarter surge,” Sailors coach Mark Todd said. “We had good slides to their [San Clemente’s] offense.”

In addition to Goltz’s double hat trick, Farmer had three goals and Bennett Cox scored two. Hutton Wooters and Jackson Sawall each scored one goal, and Garrett Rovazzini recorded 12 saves to anchor the defense.

For the Tritons, Liam Nelson led the way with five goals, and Luke Lemus scored three. Jake Brannon chipped in a goal for the Tritons, who got five saves from Eugene Kang.

“They’re a much better team than their record shows,” Todd said of the Tritons. “They improved their offense from what they were against Santiago.”

Both teams return to action on Saturday at Newport Harbor High. The Sailors (1-1) play No. 12 Santiago at 10 a.m., and the Tritons (0-2) face LA No. 1 Loyola at 2:20 p.m.