BVHS alum Vasquez becomes a part of history as player, coach in senior water polo all-star game

Coach Beto Vasquez poses with members of the Southern Water Polo Club who participated in this year’s Senior All-Star Game, from left, Eastlake’s Karyed Espinosa, Grossmont’s Haili Fellabaum and University City’s Haley Rodriguez, Lexie Jackson and Isa Pedrazzani.

The San Diego County girls water polo senior all-star game took place March 7 at the La Jolla Coggan Family Aquatic Complex.

Bonita Vista alumnus Beto Vasquez had the opportunity to serve as one of the coaches at the event that featured five South County student-athletes in the lineup.

The annual game’s format includes a match-up between the country’s larger enrollment schools and smaller enrollment schools.

Vasquez, who now patrols the deck at University City High School, coached the Small Campus team along with Doug Peabody from The Bishop’s School; Poway’s Crystal Patterson and Patrick Henry’s Charlie Equels coached the Large Campus team.

The large campus team won the game 8-4.

It was the first time that Vasquez had coached in the senior all-star game, and made a bit of history in doing so. He participated in the inaugural boys all-star game as a senior at Bonita Vista High School in 2006.

“I was very excited to coach the game with Doug Peabody, one of the most decorated coaches in the history of American water polo, who is also one of my mentors and dear friend,” said Vasquez, who also is on the coaching staff with the Southern Water Polo club locally. “I’m also very good friends with both Crystal and Charlie, so it was a real treat to coach against and alongside a bunch of polo buddies.”

Eastlake’s Karyed Espinosa suited up for the Large Campus team while San Ysidro’s Kelly Villanueva and Claudia Fernanda Garcia, along with Mar Vista’s Summer Chalmers and Melanie Clamp, participated for the Small Campus team.

Clamp earned honors as the 2019-20 Mesa League Player of the Year while Villanueva earned recognition as the 2019-20 South Bay League Player of the Year.

Chalmers, Espinosa and Fernandez Garcia were also first team all-league selections.

Bonita Vista alumnus Beto Vasquez has now played and coached in the annual senior all-star game.

“I had a lot of fun coaching senior girls from all four corners of the county — bringing them together, introducing them, and seeing them laugh and smile and become friends while playing the best game in the world,” Vasquez said. “It is definitely one highlight of my coaching career so far.”

The Small Campus team opened the scoring at the 3:23 mark on a goal by Bishop’s Sierra Martin but El Camino’s Mia Barr tied the game one minute later.

Rancho Bernardo’s Margaux Pierquin scored the first goal of the second half to allow the Large Campus team to open up a 4-2 lead.

El Capitan’s Taylor North scored late in the third quarter to start a comeback for the Small Campus team to narrow the deficit to 5-3. However, Vista’s Sydney Spence scored in the final minute of the quarter to push the Large Campus team ahead 6-3 on the scoreboard.

Goals by Poway’s Grace Kellerman and Pierquin early in the fourth quarter gave the Large Campus a commanding 8-3 lead.

Granite Hills’ Nia Payne, the 2019-20 Grossmont Valley League Player of the Year, preserved the victory for the Large Campus team with many of her 10 saves in the game.

Pierquin led the Large Campus team in scoring with two goals while Carlsbad’s Laurene Padilla, Vista’s Spence, Poway’s Kellerman, El Camino’s Barr, Granite Hills’ Audrey Laskey and Patrick Henry’s Claire Sutliff each scored one goal.

Carlsbad’s Kallie White, Westview’s Julia Derunes and Poway’s Madelei Marciniak each contributed two assists for the Large Campus team while Padilla and Eastlake’s Espinosa also chalked up assists.

Carlsbad’s Lauren Schmidt also made five goalie saves to help buttress the victory.
The Small campus team also received goals from La Jolla’s Jessica Newell and Bishop’s Katie Scott.

The San Diego Section awarded championships in four divisions this past season. Second-seeded Bishop’s defeated top-seeded Carlsbad, 10-5, to win the Open Division title while top-seeded Poway sped past seventh-seeded Westview, 16-11, to win the Division I championship.

Mesa League champion and top-seeded Mar Vista edged sixth-seeded La Costa Canyon, 10-9, to claim the Division II title while second-seeded Santa Fe Christian slipped past top-seeded Monte Vista, 7-6, to capture the Division III championship.

Finals took place Feb. 22 at La Jolla High School.

Mar Vista (29-5) went on to win the Southern California Division III title in finals played Feb. 28-29.

Bishop’s (25-4) finished second in the Division I SoCal regional championship game while San Diego Section Open Division semifinalist Cathedral Catholic (19-14) finished runner-up in the Division II SoCal regional final.


San Diego Senior All-Star Game Rosters

Large Campus team

Lauren Schmidt (Carlsbad)
Nia Payne (Granite Hills)

Field players
Laurene Padilla (Carlsbad)
Sydney Spence (Vista)
Grace Kellerman (Poway)
Marqaux Pierguin (Rancho Bernardo)
Kallie White (Carlsbad)
Mia Barr (El Camino)
Karyed Espinosa (Eastlake)
Emilia Pircher (Rancho Bernardo)
Alex Wong (Poway)
Josephine Reinicke (Helix)
Lily Wickham (Torrey Pines)
Maddie Marciniak (Poway)
Claire Sutliff (Patrick Henry)
Audrey Laskey (Granite Hills)
Annie Welch (La Costa Canyon)
Sophia Wallace (Fallbrook)
Haili Fallabaum (Grossmont)
|Riley Coleman (Mira Mesa)

Coaches: Crystal Patterson (Poway), Charlie Equels (Patrick Henry)


Small Campus team

Kelly Villanueva (San Ysidro)
Shauna Franke (La Jolla)

Field players
Sierra Martin (Bishop’s)
Lauren Gauvin (Coronado)
Katie Scott (Bishop’s)
Jessica Newell (La Jolla)
Jenna Harper (University City)
Mia Salatka (Bishop’s)
Lexie Jackson (University City)
Haley Rodriguez (University City)
Summer Chalmers (Mar Vista)
Claudia Fernanda Garcia (San Ysidro)
Taylor North (El Capitan)
Tavaya Martinezcuello (Point Loma)
Melanie Clamp (Mar Vista)
Grace Langdon (Valley Center)
Isa Pedrazzani (University City)
Stephanie Beville (El Capitan)
Taylor McBride (San Marcos)

Coaches: Doug Peabody (Bishop’s), Beto Vasquez (University City)