Fallbrook High School’s girls water polo team opened its 2009-2010 season by reaching the semifinals of the Bronco Invitational tournament.
“It sort of set the groundwork for the season for us,” Fallbrook coach Bob Lamont said of the tournament, in which the Warriors finished fourth among the 32 teams.
The Warriors followed the tournament with three non-league wins, giving them a 6-2 record for December. All three of Fallbrook’s non-tournament wins were against teams which defeated the Warriors during the 2008-2009 season.
The Warriors began their season with two December 3 Bronco Invitational games played at Westview High School. Fallbrook’s season opener was a 12-0 win over Eastlake.
“That was a good indicator of some things,” Lamont said. “That was a very nice start for us.”
Fallbrook goalie Alex Rodriguez recorded the shutout against the Titans. Offensively the Warriors were led by Demi Barrett’s three goals. Barrett would become one of five Warriors to record multiple goals in a game during December.
In Fallbrook’s other December 3 game, Rodriguez made 12 saves as the Warriors defeated Huntington Beach High School by a 9-3 score. “Another good defensive effort. Team played really well that night. Everybody got involved in the offense,” Lamont said.
Jackie Verdon led the Warriors offensively with four goals against the Oilers.
Fallbrook returned to Westview for a December 4 tournament match against Poway. “That was a really tight game,” Lamont said.
The Warriors prevailed over the Titans by a 9-8 score. Sarah Bushnell scored three goals while Verdon and Erin McCook each placed two balls into the net.
The semifinal match and the third-place game were played December 5 at Rancho Bernardo. Fallbrook’s first loss of the season was an 11-3 defeat in the semifinals to Fountain Valley.
“We had a very good first quarter. We only trailed by one,” Lamont said.
Barrett scored all three goals for Fallbrook in the semifinal against the Barons.
Dana Hills defeated Fallbrook by a 12-9 score in the third-place game. Verdon scored four of the Warriors’ goals against the Dolphins while Barrett had three tallies.
The Warriors followed the tournament by traveling to Capistrano Valley for a December 10 match and taking a 13-7 win over the Cougars. Verdon scored four goals while Bushnell and Barrett had three scores apiece. Walker had four assists against the Cougars, and Rodriguez blocked two Capistrano Valley five-meter penalty shots.
Fallbrook played another intercounty road match December 15 at Great Oak High School and took a 15-9 victory over the Wolf Pack. “We played real well,” Lamont said.
Barrett had five goals against Great Oak while Cassie Dowden and Bushnell each scored three times. Walker provided four assists, and Rodriguez made eight saves.
On December 17 the Warriors traveled to Montgomery Middle School in El Cajon, which is where Granite Hills High School plays its home matches. Fallbrook’s 8-6 win over the Eagles included five goals by Barrett and two by Verdon. Walker scored the other goal and had her third consecutive four-assist game. Hunter Bowman led the Warriors with four steals and Rodriguez had another eight-save game.
“We’ll be trying to sustain our consistency over the next two weeks,” Lamont said.
The Warriors will follow their three-week break with a January 7 match at Patrick Henry, whose home games are played at the Allied Gardens Recreation Center pool.
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