El Toro (19-9) VS. SANTA MARGARITA (23-6)
Site, time: William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center, 6:30
Outlook: The South County rivals have been top contenders in Division 2 all season but haven’t played. The second-seeded Eagles claimed the Trinity League title while El Toro captured the South Coast. Despite its lofty seeded, Santa Margarita has ground out two difficult wins against San Clemente (18-13) and Murrieta Valley (7-6 in overtime).
El Toro’s defense has shined in the playoffs. The Chargers and Michigan-bound goalie Emily Browning defeated Montebello, 8-4, in Commerce in the quarterfinals. Santa Margarita’s balanced attack with offer another challenge. The Eagles feature U.S. junior national team center and Cal signee Emily Loughlin (88 goals) and a group of attackers led by sharp-shooting junior Haley Wan (102 goals). Santa Margarita, meanwhile, will contend with Michigan-bound center Allison Skaggs and a group of attackers led by Delaney Riley. Both offenses will need to support their centers, who likely will draw extra attention from defenders.