Fri, Feb 03 2012 05:12 PM Posted By: Phillip Brents
The wins keep piling up for the Otay Ranch High School girls water polo team, so many, in fact, that it’s hard to imagine the Mustangs not reaping some kind of reward in the upcoming San Diego Section playoffs.
Otay Ranch defeated Bonita Vista, 15-6, to open the second and final round of league play on Jan. 26 and sank Mater Dei Catholic, 24-1, on Wednesday. The victories raised the Mustangs to 6-0 in Mesa League play and officially handed them this year’s league title.
The Mesa League champions upped their overall record to a stunning 17-2 combined with two victories on Monday to jump-start play in the 38-team San Diego Open tournament.
Otay Ranch defeated Canyon Crest, 9-4, in a game played at Helix High School. The Mustangs finished the opening day of competition with an 8-3 victory against Helix.
“The girls remain focused on making the CIF playoffs and being competitive in the playoffs,” ORHS coach Ernie Medina said. “The girls are proud of their program and have worked hard to accomplish what they have so far.”
Medina, one of the conference’s veteran coaches, refers to his starting seven varsity players as “the Magnificent Seven.”
They comprise Sarah Medina, Kelsey Eaton, Tori Kelly, Audrey Py, Sara Gagarin, Mariela Rodriguez and goalie Bri Patricio.
“These girls work as a team and are at the top of the stat leaders in the league,” the elder Medina said. “The Lady Mustangs have two games left in league and the rest of the San Diego Open and are looking to (make) a strong finish.”
Sarah Medina and Eaton remain the team’s offensive catalysts. Medina had six goals, 10 steals and two assists in the Jan. 26 win over Bonita Vista while Eaton had six goals, one steal and two assists.
Medina had nine goals, four assists and six steals in Wednesday’s victory while Eaton accumulated five goals, four assists and five steals.
In the two games on Monday, Medina totaled seven goals, eight steals and four assists while Eaton compiled seven goals, six steals and three assists.
Ample support continues to come from teammates Py, Kelly, Gagarin, Rodriguez and Patricio.
Py had four goals, two assists and eight steals in the latest league win against the Crusaders and collected two goals, seven steals and two assists in Monday’s pair of victories.
Gagarin had three goals, three steals and two assists against MDC while Rodriguez had one goal, one assist and five steals against Helix. Kelly notched a goal, assist and two steals against the Crusaders.
Patricio had six saves against the Barons, nine saves against Canyon Crest, 13 against Helix and eight against Mater Dei.
Kelly Micallef and Sofia Fialko were each credited with three goals for Bonita Vista in the Jan. 26 loss to Otay Ranch.
The Barons dropped to 3-2 in league play.
The San Diego Section playoffs start Feb. 15 for teams in Division I and Division II and Feb. 16 for teams in Division III. Quarterfinals are scheduled Feb. 17 at La Jolla High School for Division I and Feb. 18 at the same site for Division II and Division III.
The section semifinals are scheduled Feb. 21 (Division I), Feb. 22 (Division II) and Feb. 23 (Division III), also at LJHS.
A triple-header of division finals is scheduled Feb. 25 at LJHS: Division I (2:30 p.m.), Division II (5 p.m.) and Division III (7:30 p.m.).
Mesa League Standings
x-Otay Ranch Mustangs 6-0
Bonita Vista Barons 3-3
Eastlake Titans 3-3
Hilltop Lancers 2-3
Mater Dei Catholic Crusaders 0-6
x-clinched league championship
Wednesday, Feb. 1
Otay Ranch 24, Mater Dei Catholic 1
Eastlake 7, Bonita Vista 5
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