Ice Lions Make OC Sports History – Again

Ice Lions 1

Last year, they became Orange County’s first high school ice hockey team.

This year, they won the first all-Orange County high school hockey game, beating Santa Margarita Catholic High School, 5-2.Ice Lions 2

It was big news when the Ice Lions – sponsored by the Anaheim Ducks – became a team.

The Ice Lions’ historic hockey program – and victory against SMCHS – have made big news again. The team was the subject of a column on the Sports section cover of today’s Orange County Register.

The Ice Lions are coached by former Anaheim Ducks David Karpa and Guy Hebert.

The column, by the Register’s Jeff Miller, talked about the challenges ice hockey players from Orange County face compared to their counterparts in places like Minnesota.

Read the column here:

Ice Lions 3

Football Team’s Historic Victory the Latest Exciting Development at JSerra

The following letter was distributed to members of the JSerra community this week:

There's a lot to celebrate at JSerra
There's a lot to celebrate at JSerra

When the final whistle blew, the scoreboard read: JSerra 14, Santa Margarita 12. It was our varsity football team’s first Trinity League victory in 15 tries.  The reaction at Saddleback Community College was spontaneous and wonderful. Players doused coach Jim Hartigan with Gatorade. Lion Nation stormed the field to congratulate the players. It was an historic accomplishment for the team, our young school and the community.

To read more about our undefeated football team (6-0), please visit JSerra Blog. We invite you to join Lion Nation at our next home varsity game on October 30 at 7:30PM against Mater Dei at Saddleback. To view the varsity football schedule, click here.

Football isn’t the only activity generating excitement on campus. Our boys’ and girls’ cross country teams are ranked among the best in the state. The team is coached by Martin Dugard, an author of nine books whose current non-fiction piece, “The Murder of King Tut,” debuted fifth on the New York Times list of best sellers.

Our ice hockey team, led by former Anaheim Ducks David Karpa and Guy Hebert, is also off to a strong start with an 8-2-1 overall record.Varsity Team

And the campus is anxiously awaiting the start of the girls’ water polo season. The team is coached by Julie Swail-Ertel, captain of the 2000 silver medalist U.S. Olympic team. Julie also represented the U.S.A. last summer in the triathlon at the Beijing Games.

For more on our fast start to the new school year (which includes a National Merit Scholarship Finalist and 34 Advanced Placement winners), please read CEO Frank Talarico’s most recent column in the Capistrano Dispatch.

Parents, want to support JSerra athletics while enjoying a great night out? Attend JSerra’s annual Casino Night on November 7 at the JSerra Pavilion. For just $50 you’ll enjoy great food, live music, a hosted bar, casino-style gaming and a fabulous auction (just in time for early Christmas shopping). Visit for more information.

If you haven’t had the chance to view our beautiful campus in person, view it virtually at Don’t miss our Open House & Campus Tour on November 12 from 6:00-8:00PM in the JSerra Pavilion.

JSerra Hires Former NHL Stars to Coach Ice Lions Hockey Team

JSerra Catholic High School announced today that David Karpa and Guy Hebert, two long-time stars of the Anaheim Ducks, will lead the Ice Lions coaching staff during its second season.

David Karpa
David Karpa

David Karpa, the veteran defenseman, is the squad’s new head coach. Retired NHL all-star Guy Hebert will serve as goalie coach. Joining them on the coaching staff is strength and conditioning coach Joshua Aycock.

“It’s an honor and thrill for me to be involved in sharing my passion for ice hockey with the next generation of players, and I’m particularly excited about leading the sport’s growth in Southern California,” said Karpa, who lives in Newport Beach. “We have an outstanding group of scholar-athletes dedicated to their sport and their community.”

Hebert  who was Karpa’s teammate on the Ducks, said he was impressed with the values JSerra instills in its students and scholar-athletes.

“My hope is that I can help teach the scholar-athletes not only to a better player on the ice but to be a better person off the ice,” he said. “Many challenges that athletes face in competition help mold their character. He also said he looks forward to working with the goalies.

Guy Hebert
Guy Hebert

“Goalies are often overlooked so I hope I can help give them a good base for their further development,” he said.

JSerra made history last year when it partnered with the Ducks to become the inaugural team in the first-ever Orange County high school ice hockey league. The team travelled to compete in tournaments as far away as Canada, Ohio and Chicago, plus competed against Southern California Amateur Hockey Association teams. It was the only high school team.

This year, the league expanded to include JSerra’s Trinity League rivals Santa Margarita Catholic High School. The Ice Lions will face off against their Santa Margarita rivals for the first time on September 26th at The Rinks at Anaheim at 7:30pm.

The game will mark an important step in the sport’s evolution. Another step will come at Thanksgiving when the Ice Lions compete in the prestigious Loyola Academy Thanksgiving Tournament in Chicago and travel to south Florida to face the defending state champion North Broward High School on October 4th.

In other sports news at JSerra, Julie Swail-Ertel, of Irvine, a rare two-sport Olympian, was hired to direct the aquatics program and coach the girls’ water polo team. And Joedy Gardner is the new head boys basketball coach. He was a private trainer to elite players, including several NBA stars.

“We remain committed to providing all our students with a world-class educational experience,” said Frank Talarico, JSerra’s CEO.

Karpa played for the Ducks from 1994-98. Among the highlights of his career was his decisive goal in the seventh game of the 1997 Western Conference semi-finals against Phoenix Coyotes.

Hebert, of Newport Beach, was the first pick in the 1993 expansion draft. He retired in 2001 and still ranks first or second among Ducks leaders in every goalkeeping category.

Just six years old, JSerra’s $110-million facilities and $40 million athletics complex are regarded as among the finest in the region. Last year the school won its first Trinity League championships in boys soccer, boys lacrosse and baseball. Baseball coach Brett Kay was the Orange County Register’s Coach of the Year.

For more about JSerra Catholic High School, please visit

Varsity Team