Water Polo: La Habra prevails, Sonora stumbles
by La Habra Journal Staff
The La Habra Highlanders’ boys water polo team improved their Freeway League chances with a 15-9 win over the Fullerton Indians, Thursday, at La Habra.
La Habra started the game sluggish, and Fullerton did not at all. The Indians came out strong and dominated the first quarter. It appeared that Fullerton was going to end the first quarter with a 5-3 lead.
With only six seconds remaining in the quarter, Sean Pedersen got a rebound on a missed shot by Grant Harris and put in a goal to cut the deficit to 5-4.
“We came out really slow at the beginning,” said junior Jacob Graham. “I was a little scared when they came out that strongly. They did a few things that I did not expect them to do, but we got it together and started to play our game.”
It did not take long for the Highlanders to take over the game. La Habra outscored Fullerton 6-1 in the period and took a 10-6 lead into the half.
“We should have been able to play that way all game,” said La Habra coach David Edwards. “We just didn’t come out ready to play, and they took advantage of us.”
The La Habra offense was anchored by Graham and Grant Harris. Sean Pedersen struggled for the second consecutive game. He had two goals on fourteen shots and got kicked out of the game late in the fourth when he got his third exclusion.
“Sean was off again,” Edwards said. “He is getting shots off but just keeps shooting mid-cage. We need to reel him back in, and get his mind back where it needs to be.”
Graham had five goals and two assists, and Harris had three goals and four assists.
“I thought we played really well today,” Harris said. “It wasn’t necessarily pretty but we got the job done.”
The second half was more of the same and Fullerton was never able to get themselves back into the game.
With the win, the Highlanders improve to 4-2 in league play and will get a rematch with Sunny Hills, who is also 4-2. The first match did not go the way the Highlanders wanted it to, but they are confident this time around.
“Sunny Hills is a great team, but we also made a lot of mistakes and did not play to the level that I know we can,” Edwards said. “We need to lower the number of exclusions and play hard all four quarters.”
The winner of the game will put themselves in a good position to make a run at the playoffs.
– JEREMIAH GIRARD
TROY 12, SONORA 4
The Raiders settled for outside shots, most coming from goalkeeper Nick Angulo, as the Warriors were allowing nothing inside. Angulo scored a goal at the end of the first quarter.
Angulo’s goal was the only score for Sonora in the first half, as the Warriors jumped ahead 6-1.
Richard Atnip and Shane Conlin scored in the third quarter for the visiting Raiders (6-17, 1-5). Daniel Babashoff added a long-range goal with just over a minute remaining in the fourth quarter.
Adrian Barragan and Trent Samaha led the way for Troy (10-9, 5-1) with three goals each. Johnathan Shim finished with six assists for the Warriors.
Sonora stays on the road next Tuesday with a game at Fullerton.
– NATHAN PERCY