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Monday, February 18 , 2019, 5:15 pm | Partly Cloudy 56º

Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank

San Marcos Boys Lacrosse Seeded 2nd in Division 2 Playoffs

The San Marcos boys lacrosse team will play its first-ever postseason game on Wednesday at home against Glendale. Click to view larger
The San Marcos boys lacrosse team will play its first-ever postseason game on Wednesday at home against Glendale. (Courtesy photo)

The San Marcos boys lacrosse team became the first of the Santa Barbara city schools to make the postseason in the sport.

The Royals were seeded No. 2 in the Division 2 Southern Section North Division playoffs and will play their first playoff game at home against Glendale on Wednesday at 4 p.m.

The North Division consists of teams from L.A., Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. A total of 24 teams were selected for the playoffs, with the top 16 playing in Division 1. That division is led by Palos Verdes. San Marcos just missed being a top-16 team. The Royals finished 18th in the last division rankings, which are done by the coaches.

"I wasn't completely surprised because part of it is political and part of it is strength of schedule," San Marcos coach Rick Lehman said.  "The bottom line is we did not have the strength of schedule to really stand up. All the top teams plays each other and know each other, and they're able to rank each other. They don't know about us."

The Royals (12-2) played just one top-10 this season, Oaks Christian (ranked No. 6), in the first game of the season and lost 11-6.

"What I learned is strength of schedule is one of the biggest things," Lehman said. "Next year, I'm going to add that whole Thousand Oaks region to our schedule, so we have games against top-ranked teams. Six schools (Oak Park, Oaks Christian, Westlake, Newbury Park, Thousand Oaks, Agoura) from that region all finished in the top 10 of the L.A. Coaches Poll and made the Division 1 playoffs.

The Division 2 playoff bracket consists of top-seed Mira Costa, Calabasas, St. John Bosco, Valencia, Redondo Union, Culver City, Glendale and San Marcos. Mira Costa (ranked 14th) and San Marcos are the top-20 teams in the field.

While he was disappointed not to chosen for the Division 1 playoffs, Lehman is happy the Royals are in the postseason for the first time.

"I told the team this is considered a D2 CIF championship bracket... ‘You're playing for a championship; this is not messing around.’ We didn't make the top level but, honestly, we're not ready for the top level."

If the Royals win Wednesday, they would host a semifinal game on Tuesday against Redondo Union or Culver City.

In girls lacrosse, undefeated Cate was seeded fourth in the top bracket. The Rams (14-0) open the playoffs at home against Thousand Oaks on Tuesday at 5 p.m.

Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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