Neither team substituted in Nipomo's 10-3 win over Santa Maria in the fifth-place game of the Santa Maria Tournament at Santa Maria High School's Karl Bell Aquatic Center Saturday.

Neither team substituted because neither team could. Both teams only had their starters.

Both teams made it into the playoffs last year. Both have been hit hard by graduation, and Saturday both were missing some of the players they do have this year.

"Both teams were a skeleton of themselves today," said Nipomo coach Kurt Lindgren.

"Some guys were taking SATs. There's been sickness. There's this bad respiratory problem that's been going around. Both teams will be ready Wednesday for the game that really counts."

Santa Maria coach Josh Troeger said, "One of our guys didn't make grades, another is in concussion protocol and there's an illness in our regular goalie's family. Neither of the guys who was in goal for us today usually plays goalkeeper for us."

Nipomo and Santa Maria are both 0-3 in the Los Padres League. They will both try to get in the LPL win column in their last league game before the league tournament when they play each other at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Karl Bell pool.

"We're hoping to win that one to get a better seeding for the league tournament (with a win Wednesday) and go from their,"said Lindgren. Lindgren said LPL seedings for the playoffs will be based on a combination of regular season and league tournament results.  

PAC 8 League member San Luis Obispo defeated Fresno Bullard 8-3 in the tournament championship game. In a matchup of PAC 8 rivals, Atascadero routed Paso Robles 12-2 for third place. St. Joseph blanked Fresno Sunnyside 9-0 for seventh place.

Mark Erbstrosser tossed in three goals as the Tigers rolled to victory in the tournament championship game. Wylie Truschke popped in two goals for the tournament champs.  

Nipomo's Blake Hudson scored just over two minutes into the first quarter for the first goal of the fifth-place game.

Aidan Lange put in a rebound shot late in the first quarter to pull the host team within 2-1, but Evan Chavarria scored on a Nipomo power play the next possession and the Saints never could challenge the Titans thereafter.

Hudson and Chavarria scored early in the second quarter to lengthen Nipomo's lead to 6-1. 

The Titans' swimmers were simply faster than the Saints' were most of the way, and the score was 8-1 at halftime.

Drew Kringel and Jose Cuevas, the two natural field position players who were pressed into playing goalie for their short-handed team Saturday, both acquitted themselves well in the cage, though the final score didn't indicate it.

The ball hit Cuevas in the face when Cuevas made a third quarter save. "We're going to have to take a look at him next week," said Troeger.

Nipomo's scoring was spread around. Chavarria finished with three goals, Hudson and Garrett Sellers scored two goals apiece and Caleb Ray, Cameron Porter and Asher Pole all scored one.

Lange scored two goals for Santa Maria. Bryan Montanez scored one.

The league preliminaries and finals will take place Oct. 24 and Oct. 26 at the Karl Bell pool.

Atascadero 12, Paso Robles 2

Alec Grant racked up five goals and Kyle Warue scored three more as the Greyhounds cruised past the Bearcats for third place.

St. Joseph 9, Sunnyside 0

Justin Jones and Ryan Galanski scored three goals apiece, and the Knights' defense shut out the Wildcats as St. Joseph won the seventh place game handily.

Ryan Zimmerman, Jamison Stahl and Aden Anderson all scored a goal for St. Joseph.  

   

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Sports Reporter