The rivalry was rekindled – and again won by Santa Margarita – in the semi-finals of the third annual JSerra Catholic High School Thanksgiving Invitational Hockey Tournament, which concluded Saturday afternoon at Anaheim ICE when the Eagles fell, 2-0, to Winnipeg’s John Taylor Collegiate in the championship game.
Mike Perkins, the tournament’s director and head coach of San Juan Capistrano – JSerra Catholic’s varsity team, indicated that Bellarmine wasn’t the only school to see the high bar set by Santa Margarita’s hockey program as a catalyst towards a projected goal – and as the fuel of a rivalry that stretches across all sports between the two southern Orange County powers.
“No doubt, Santa Margarita is a big rival for us,” he said. “I hope they feel the same about us.
“As far as the games go, they’re very heated. A lot of the kids have played on teams together over the years. They know each other. It’s no different from Catholic schools in Detroit or in Boston, and places like that where kids grow up playing with each other, against each other, and then they go to separate schools and it happens to each other in high school.”
Detroit. Boston. Mission Viejo.
The players certainly become accustomed to each other. JSerra upset an undefeated Santa Margarita team in the championship game of the 2011-12 season of the Anaheim Ducks High School Hockey League, which expanded to 14 teams for the 2012-13 season and allows players to wear their high school colors and insignias in addition to maintaining their AA and AAA club team eligibility. Santa Margarita and JSerra are the only schools in the league icing both varsity and junior varsity teams.
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