SANTA ANA – Seniors Lorenzo Santor and Danny Redell each contributed hat-tricks to help No. 5 Oaks Christian fight off a late comeback attempt by Mater Dei, the No. 9 team in Orange County. Oaks Christian carried an 8-3 lead into the fourth quarter and then hung on for a 9-8 win. With the win, the Lions extended their win streak to five games, while the Monarchs have dropped three of their last four games.
Santor scored two goals and Cade Rogers added another for Oaks Christian in the first quarter, giving the Lions a 3-2 lead. A quiet second quarter by both teams resulted in a slim 5-3 lead for the Lions at halftime.
Oaks Christian controlled possession in the third quarter and scored three unanswered goals to take a seemingly comfortable 8-3 lead into the fourth. However, the Lions showed signs of imploding, committing eight of their nine total team penalties in the fourth quarter. Mater Dei took the late momentum and brought the game well within reach, but ultimately lost 9-8.
“We played 25 percent of the game and lost by one goal to a team that could have been one of our best wins of the year,” Monarch’s coach Johnny Rodriguez said. “[Oaks Christian] gave things to us. They had four penalties in 30 seconds, and that’s what we were looking for. Nobody wanted to step up today.”
Outside of the four-point performances from Santor and Redell, who each had three goals and an assist, the Lions had a well balanced offensive attack with points from Mike Spaeth (2a), Cade Rogers (1g), Connor MacLeod (1g), Carson Campbell (1g), and Cort Rogers (1a). As a team, Oaks Christian picked up 32 ground balls and had 19 shots. They also successfully cleared 27 of 35 times.
The Monarchs were led by Sean Waterman’s impressive seven-point (3g, 4a) performance. Zach Torres added a hat trick. Nick Sando (1g) and Richard Eusey (1g) rounded out the scoring for Mater Dei.
The victorious Lions (11-2, 4-2) will look to extend their winning streak to six Tuesday when they travel to San Juan Capistrano for a nonleague matchup against JSerra (0-5, 1-10) at 7 p.m. Meanwhile, Mater Dei (9-6, 3-2) will get a week off and look to get back in the win column in a nonleague showdown with No. 14 Aliso Niguel (1-3, 6-4) on April 17 at 7 p.m.