Boys keep winning, despite fatigue and a busy schedule of water polo matches
Perhaps this weekend, the Hood River Valley High School water polo teams can come up for some air.
The boys defeated Reynolds Tuesday, 15-10, at Hood River Aquatic Center, and the girls won 18-3.
“The game wasn’t as close as the score indicates, as I played bench and JV players the final two quarters,” boys coach David Robinson said.
The teams played at Parkrose Thursday and the Eagles have two games next week: Oct. 15 at home against David Douglas and then on the road at Grant Oct. 17.
The boys are 5-0 in Metro 5A league and 5-2 in Mt. Hood 6A league.
In previous contests, the Eagles lost in double overtime to Gresham on Oct. 1 and handled Sandy 11-5 at Mt. Hood Community College pool in Gresham.
The team is healthy but fatigued, according to Robinson. Starting goalie Jed Little is back from a bout with the flu, and Pen Paphanchith and Saylor Sunby are back in action after missing games due to concussion protocol.
Parkrose boys have lost the last three meetings, but Robinson is expecting a contest.
“They’re the defending state champions and they will be tough,” he said. “They play an aggressive (passing) lane denial defense, so you have to be a lot more active,” he said.
Connor McElwee, a senior, scored four goals, and added three assists and two steals to lead the Eagles against Reynolds.
Paphanchith, a senior, racked up two goals, two assists and six steals; Corbett Blackman, senior, had two goals and two assists, and Luke Southall, junior, had two goals and a steal.
Lucas Elliott and Ben Marsden, both freshman, had a goal apiece with Elliott adding two assists.
Shea Hall, Adam Burke and Clayton Lee, all seniors, each had one goal.
Standouts on defense were Paphanchith, who was “relentless in the field,” amassing his six steals while shutting down his opponents all game, and Little, senior goalie, Robinson said.
Little marked up 10 saves, including a block on a five-meter penalty shot, and also had three steals, aggressively leaving the cage to challenge players in the field, Robinson noted.
Water polo girls look for equalizer Tuesday at home against David Douglas
Hood River Valley High School water polo seniors Celilo Brun and Faith Ocheskey executed four assists and four goals each in Tuesday’s 18-3 win over Parkrose at Hood River Aquatic Center.
“Our scoring was spread out among a lot of different players, which I always like to see,” said coach Kellie Dunn.
The team has a busy second-half season schedule, and sights set high.
“We have not lost to any 5A teams and beaten most of the 6A schools we have played against, except Barlow and David Douglas,” Dunn said.
The Eagles get a rematch at home with David Douglas on Oct. 15, and Barlow also visits Hood River Oct. 22. Varsity action usually starts around 5:30 p.m.
In the Sept. 19 contest at David Douglas, the Scots won 14-12 in overtime.
“We played them tough the whole game, but at the end we had players out with three exclusions (fouls),” Dunn said.
“We hope to take David Douglas down Tuesday,” she said. “It will be good to play them in an all-deep pool.”
(Dunn and boys’ coach David Robinson both noted that Douglas and other teams practice in pools with one deep and one shallow end, which gives the home team an advantage; the sport is intended to be played in swimming- or treading-water mode, but players used to shallow-deep pools will develop techniques for occasionally touching bottom — a method they can’t use in an all-deep pool such as Hood River’s.)
“Our younger players gained a lot of experience since we played them last time, and that will make a big difference,” she said.
That said, the David Douglas rematch comes at a critical mid-point in the season.
“We have reached the point where people are getting a little tired, which you often see in the week after homecoming,” Dunn said, “but overall, the team is staying really positive, people are coming to practice, working hard.
“We have our sights set on at 5A state championship,” Dunn said. It will be played at Osborn Aquatic Center in Corvallis.
“We’re really looking ahead for state but we want to try to steal the game against David Douglas,” she said.
Scorers were: Freshman Stellar Parker, four goals; junior Madaket Greenleaf, three; junior Olivia Summerfield, three.
Goals were also scored by sophomore Sarah Arpag, two; and one each for senior Kate Guadagnuolo, freshman Bergen Rust, and senior Jenni Ruggles.
Assists: Greenleaf, one, Summerfield, three; Arpag, two; Guadagnuolo one.
Steals: Parker, one, Ochesky, two; Greenleaf, three, Summerfield, three, Neilly Kendall, three; Guadagnuolo, three.
Ruggles registered six goalie saves and Mary Rose Kissinger five.