Mesa played a total of four games over the two days and won all four.
The first game, versus San Juan Hills High School, was a close match which ended with a game-winning goal in sudden death by Mesa senior James Lewis. The final score was 11-10.
Mesa easily swept the next two teams, Santa Ana Valley and La Quinta High Schools. These two victories placed Mesa in the championship game against Pacifica High School.
Going into their final game, Mesa’s team was assured by Coach Justin Taylor that a victory would come to them because of their physical conditioning. According to the coach, Mesa could swim harder than Pacifica in the long run.
As four quarters passed, the scores of both teams remained within two points of each other. Toward the end of the fourth quarter, Pacifica scored, gaining a one-point lead over Mesa. Senior Jamie Sacco then scored at the last second to tie up the game with seven goals for each team.
Between the fourth quarter and overtime, Coach Taylor reassured the boys once more, stating “We’re right where we want to be.” The coach also reminded the team of previous victories they had earned in close match ups. All it took, he said, was one strong possession for Mesa to win.
The opportunity came when Mesa earned a five-meter penalty. Upon seeing the penalty called by officials, Coach Taylor left his seat on the bench and ran past the halfway point of the pool, cheering. Officials gave the coach a yellow card for this breach of standard protocol (moving past half). James Lewis then went on to score the penalty, winning the game for Mesa, 8-7.
This was Mesa’s first tournament win in several years. As their prize, Boy’s Polo was awarded with free sandwiches from Lil’ Pickle USA.