The Mira Costa Mustangs won four of their last five games last season, including three in a row to claim the US Lacrosse Postseason Invitational tournament championship. Despite finishing 14-6 — the most wins and best record at the school since 2011 — the Mustangs felt they left some work unfinished.
“We missed the championship bracket last year because of two bad losses,” coach Aaron Karsh wrote in an email. “We hope to establish ourselves early this season as one of the top programs.
“We lost four games we should have won last season, and although we missed the championship bracket, we did win the invitational bracket, playing a very good San Marcos team in the final game. It was a great way for our guys to finish the season on a high note and continue that momentum into this year.”
Coach Karsh provided some things to know about Mira Costa heading into the 2018 season:
Things to Know: Mira Costa
Key returning players
- Josh Maruyama A, junior: Josh is a no non-sense workhorse for us. Wise beyond his years, he is the epitome of a speak softly but carry a big stick kinda guy. Second-team All-Bay League as a sophomore.
- Cole Garvey, D, sophomore (Captain): May be one of the best athletes to come through our program in a long time. Started as a freshmen last year [second-team All-Bay League] and has only gotten better over the summer. Made the Under Armour West team and will be a force on defense for us.
- Zach Horowitz, A/M, senior (Captain): Zach is a lead-by-example team captain. He has continued to develop each year into a multi dimensional threat offensively for us. First-team All-Bay League as a junior.
- Alejandro Ruiz, F/O, senior: Alejandro is a beast at the X for us and continues to improve each and every day. Second-team All-Bay League as a junior.
- Bailey Delgado, DM, senior (Captain): Bailey is one of our unsung heroes, as most D-middies are, but he is one that stands out above the competition. He learned the sport as a freshmen and has come a long way in his four years. Second-team All-Bay League as a junior.
- Macallan Laver, A/M, senior (Captain): Mac worked really hard in the offseason to become a bigger, stronger and faster offensive weapon for us, and we are really excited to see what he can do this year.
- Blue Ryan, D, senior (Captain): Blue has been a leader on the field for us each of his four years; he will be our senior leader on defense again this year.
- Max Geoghegan, M, junior: Max has really come into his own over the summer. He is a big-bodied middie, and we are expecting a lot of great things from him this season.
Other notable returners and newcomers
We get a couple guys back from injury this year. Ryan Beste and Connor Barnes both are dynamic offensive players for us who will be a big part of a lethal unit. Coaches Chris Wells, Tommy Johnson and Alex Dodge all return to our staff, as well as the addition of goalie coach Brody Polansky, who comes to us from Maryland and will help with our program in many different ways.
Fall-ball and offseason program
Lots of strength and conditioning in the fall. We also have a box program and a couple tournaments in the fall.
We have a lot of freshmen playing football, a few playing hockey, several surfers, as well as a couple in soccer and basketball. Henry Householter is one of our many multi-sport athletes. You can catch him on the court for the varsity Mustang basketball program. We also have Zach Rosenberg, who has been all over the world with the Costa surf program and may end up on the cover of Surfer magazine one day!
We are playing tougher schedule than we did last year. We have a huge early test against Palos Verdes the first week of the season but are looking forward to the challenge.
- Academic honors: We may have had the most scholar athletes of any sport at Mira Costa. Our guys work very hard in the classroom, and that is something we are really proud of.
- National recognition: Cole getting to play in the UA tournament was a big deal. He certainly has Division 1 level talent and we are excited to see where he can take his lacrosse career.
- Community service: Being from a beach community, our guys wanted to organize a beach clean up day. In addition a couple of them have started to organize an animal shelter event, and a holiday gift drive. Mira Costa also put together a Hurricane Harvey relief drive effort.
- Campus makeover: We have some brand new facilities going in at Mira Costa. Our new field complex was just finished, and our new gym and field house is set to start construction very soon.