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Waldorf soars to semis

12th Annual Daily Pilot Cup

Small school uses contributions from both boys and girls to edge Christ Lutheran in bronze division game.

June 02, 2011|By Matt Szabo, matthew.szabo@latimes.com
(Kevin Chang / Daily…)

COSTA MESA — Samantha Ogawa is one of the top defenders for the Waldorf School of Orange County boys' fifth- and sixth-grade bronze division team.

Don't let the division throw you off. Ogawa is assuredly a girl for Waldorf, along with five of her teammates. She and another girl, Kristina Marran-Fischer, help anchor the back line for Waldorf.

Waldorf plays co-ed at the Daily Pilot Cup, Ogawa said, because it's a really small school. But nobody can tease Waldorf for having girls on its team. The results don't lie.

"It's kind of fun to beat guys," Ogawa said after Waldorf defeated Christ Lutheran, 5-3, in Thursday's pool-play game at the Farm Sports Complex.

Waldorf won its three-team pool and advances to the bronze division semifinals on Sunday.

It was a team effort for Waldorf, which had Kobe Wood, Lars Bloch, Amadeo Gamboa, Chase Jacques and Bobby Oxford-Pope each score single goals. Goalie Sebastian Stirbu also made some big saves, finishing with eight of them.

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"I knew it was going to be wild," Waldorf Coach Wolfgang Bloch said. "[Christ Lutheran] has some phenomenal players. I think they actually had better players than we did. But what I said from Day One, my first practice with them, I told them that this is a team sport. There's 11 kids on the field. No matter how good the other team is or how great the players they have, if you play as a team you have better chances of winning. There were no superstars that really stood out. They had the twins attacking, attacking, attacking."

Christ Lutheran's twins, Alex and Chandler Pearce, never stopped running throughout the 50-minute game. They made their mark, each scoring a goal after arriving a few minutes late for the game.

"I was hoping they weren't going to show up," Wood said of his friends' late appearance. "But they did."

Their mother, Coach Jaci Pearce, watched as Alex crossed the ball to teammate Liam Jason, who made a header to knot the score at 1-1 late in the first half. Waldorf's Lars Bloch responded just before halftime, scoring on a free kick from the left for a 2-1 lead.

The score was 3-3 in the waning minutes when Waldorf again went ahead. Pressure by Jacques and Oxford-Pope brought the ball into the Christ Lutheran box, where it bounced out to Gamboa. He found the back of the net with six minutes left, giving Waldorf another advantage.

Oxford-Pope added the final goal just before the game ended.

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