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Otay Ranch Mustangs make a splash at Winter Classic girls water polo tournament Phillip Brents | Fri, Dec 23 2011 12:12 PM

The Otay Ranch High School girls water polo team scored its highest finish in four seasons of play in the Winter Classic tournament by defeating La Costa Canyon Mavericks, 11-9, last Saturday to place fifth overall in the 20-team tournament.

Previously, the Mustangs had finished eighth twice and ninth twice.

Sarah Medina led Otay Ranch in the placement game with five goals, five steals and two assists. Kelsey Eaton contributed five goals and one assist while Audrey Py had one goal and one assist.

Tori Kelly made four steals while Mariela Rodriguez collected three steals and one assist, Fernanda Arambula and Sara Gagarin each had three steals and Bri Patricio made nine goalie saves.

The Mustangs finished 3-2 in the East County tournament. Otay Ranch qualified for the fifth-place game after edging Grossmont, 4-3, earlier in the day.

Medina, Kelly, Eaton and Rodriguez each scored single goals against the Foothillers to power Otay Ranch, which was further buoyed by 13 saves from Patricio and 19 team steals (including five by Medina and four each by Rodriguez and Kelly).

Otay Ranch’s Medina earned honors as a member of the all-tournament second team while Eaton was named an honorable mention.

The Bonita Vista Barons finished 14th in the tournament standings, followed by the Eastlake Titans in 15th place. Both teams posted 2-3 records.

Bonita Vista defeated Mission Hills (10-3) and San Marcos (14-8) while Eastlake’s wins came against Point Loma (5-3) and San Marcos (12-3).

Granite Hills slipped past Patrick Henry, 7-6, in the championship game while Valhalla defeated Canyon Anaheim, 12-10, to capture third place.

In other placement games, Grossmont edged Canyon Crest Academy, 6-5, to claim seventh place while Rancho Buena Vista defeated Capistrano Valley, 10-9, in the ninth-place game, Valley Center defeated Del Norte, 16-8, in the 11th-place game and University City defeated Bonita Vista, 11-3, in the 13th-place game.

Eastlake defeated San Marcos in the 15th place game.

Otay Ranch lost, 11-3, to Patrick Henry to close out pool play last Friday.

Wet shots
Otay Ranch defeated Grossmont, 7-6, in overtime in a non-league game on Tuesday. Eaton led the Mustangs with three goals, two steals and one assist while Medina had two goals, one assist and three steals, Py had two goals, one assist and one steal, Rodriguez contributed three steals, Kelly and Arambula each collected two steals, Gagarin had one steal and Patricio had 10 saves.

The win improved Otay Ranch’s record to 7-2.

The Mustangs face off Mesa League play Jan. 18 against Bonita Vista at Southwestern College.

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