Irvine will get another chance to win a boys basketball tournament championship this season.

The Vaqueros defeated El Modena 47-34 at Estancia High on Thursday in the Estancia Coast Classic semifinals to advance to the tournament’s championship game.

Irvine (11-8) will play Estancia (12-4) in the tournament final Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Estancia.

El Modena (12-4) will play Santiago (10-7) in the third-place game at Estancia on Friday at 6 p.m.

The Vaqueros in November lost to Tustin in the Rancho Alamitos Tournament championship game.

Cooper Stearns, a 6-foot-4 sophomore forward, led Irvine with 18 points and 14 rebounds Thursday. He made 6 of his 13 shots. Senior guard Daniel Shin added 11 points for the Vaqueros.

El Modena was led by Drew Rodriguez’s 14 points.

Both teams played hard-nosed defense. Loose balls often led to three players on the floor, battling for possession. All of that was to Stearns’ liking, as was limiting El Modena to 34 points.

“We were really intense on the defensive end,” Stearns said. “We were forcing a lot of turnovers, diving for the ball and boxing out.”

Irvine took the lead midway through the first quarter and maintained it the rest of the way. The Vaqueros had a 10-9 lead at the end of the first quarter. Stearns scored seven points in the second quarter to help Irvine to a 27-21 lead at halftime.

The Vaqueros did not shoot well from outside. They missed their first 11 3-point shots, but when they finally did make one it was significant – a 3 by Shin in the final minute of the third quarter that pushed Irvine’s lead to 40-30.

Irvine was 19 of 50 on all shots, 1 for 14 on 3s. El Modena was 14 for 56 from the floor including 2 for 15 on 3-point shots.

Also in the Estancia Coast Classic:

Estancia 64, Santiago 58: Jaedon Hose-Shea scored 24 points, including four 3-pointers, as the Eagles defeated the Cavaliers in the semifinals.

Estancia’s last appearance in its Coast Classic final was in 2019 when the Eagles won the tournament championship.

Peter Sanchez scored 15 points with six rebounds and James De La Oh added 14 points for Estancia.

Xavier Ojeda led Santiago with 19 points with four 3s. Jacob Buboi scored 16 points for the Cavaliers.

Santiago scored 22 points in the third quarter to carry a 54-49 lead into the fourth. Early in the final quarter Sanchez scored off of an offensive rebound, was fouled and made the free throw to complete the three-point play and followed with another inside basket for a 54-54 tie. He again converted an offensive rebound into a basket with 1:18 remaining to put Estancia on top 60-58.

De La Oh and Miles Dodge made two free throws each for Estancia in the final 20 seconds to create the final six-point margin.

Estancia coach Xavier Castellanos was pleased with the way his team fought back in the fourth quarter.

“We haven’t done that all year,” he said. “That was  a great win for us.”

In the Tustin Classic:

No. 7 Tesoro 59, Tustin 51: Carson Brown scored 21 points and Jake Bennett scored 13 with 10 rebounds for the Titans (15-2).

Tesoro will play No. 11 Los Alamitos (12-4) in the tournament championship game Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Tustin High.

In the Desert Holiday Classic:

No. 1 Mater Dei 91, Serra of Gardena 69: Zach Davidson scored 25 points with 12 rebounds for the Monarchs (11-2). They will play Lincoln of Stockton in a tournament divisional championship game Friday at 5:15 p.m. at Rancho Mirage High.

No. 18 Villa Park 70, Indio 54: Jack Sharar scored 22 points to lead the Spartans (11-5) to a divisional championship game.

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No. 17 Fountain Valley 76, Calipatria 35: Fernando Garcia’s 21 points and 11 rebounds led the Barons (12-5) to a win that sends them to a divisional championship game against Summit on Friday.

In the Holiday Classic at Torrey Pines:

Nos. 10 Foothill 60, Mission Hills 57: The Knights (14-1) will play in the Senator Division championship game Friday.