For the first time ever in OCS athletic history, the boys water polo team brought home the championship title with an upset win over Aliso Niguel, 9-7. The team made good on their first-ever appearance in the CIF Division 3 Southern Section finals in front of a cheering crowd at the William Woollett Jr. Aquatic Center in Irvine.
Coming down to the final minutes, Junior Nikola Iliac lofted a pass from the right perimeter and Junior Samuel Worley tossed it in the net to give the Lions the championship winning goal with 2:52 remaining. Junior Jake Ehrhardt led all scorers including adding one more goal to Worley's game winner to bring the final score to 9-7. Iliac ended the game with 2 goals, 3 assists and 4 steals while goalie Adrian Weinberg, sophomore, had 11 saves and 5 steals.
Commenting on the historic win, Coach Jack Kocur said, "It was great to see the hard work and sacrifice pay off in the end for our team. The guys kept their composure through the first half when Aliso Niguel was outperforming us. In the second half, you could see the leadership in the pool rise to the top to pull out some great defensive stops which lead to very impressive goals for us on the other end. This victory is a community achievement that reflects the support of the families, athletes, coaching staff, and athletic department."
Water polo's previous best post seasons included 3 consecutive semifinal loses, two of which were lost by a last second goal. Kocur in his second season at the helm now has a 4-1 playoff record. Water polo brings the Oaks Christian athletics total of CIF SS championships to 40 over the last 14 years, an unmatched tally by a school in CIF SS history.