Boys’ water polo loses CCS first round

November 24, 2019 — by Ethan Lin and Alan Zu

The boys’ water polo team’s season ended in a first-round 16-4 loss to No. 1 seeded Stevenson High School at Santa Cruz High School during the first round of CCS on Nov. 8. 

“Our defense was terrible. Everyone gave up because the other team was way better than us, and they only tried to get goals,” senior goalie Nima Aminzadeh said. “We gave up after the first quarter because everyone was just like ‘screw this.’” 

Stevenson’s defense and offense overpowered the Falcons, keeping them from scoring until the end of the third quarter, when sophomore field player Jonathan Li managed to sneak a near-side goal during an ejection to beat the buzzer. Even though the team did not advance in CCS, many players like senior Brian Chu were thrilled at how well they did. 

“To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much in CCS. It’s already an achievement we made it there,” Chu said. 

Their main accomplishment was to finish as co-champions of the El Camino League along with Santa Clara. The last time the team received a banner and qualified for CCS was in 2013. Adding to the positives for the year, sophomore Marcus Kuo was voted as the all-league most valuable field player, and seniors Eng Kwa, Bryan Chu and Amenizedah made the league first-team. 

At the end of their league season, the team defeated  Milpitas 14-8 and Cupertino 5-4 in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively, of the league tournament; however, to the team’s disappointment, they lost to Santa Clara 8-4 in the finals.

Because the team won more games during the season than Santa Clara, the Falcons also qualified for CCS despite the tournament result.

Sophomore field player Jaime Fernandez da Ponte’s tie-breaking goal with 10 seconds left on the clock in the match against Cupertino secured the team’s spot in the CCS playoffs. However, the team felt dissatisfied with the last league game against Santa Clara.

“We should have won against Santa Clara,” Aminzadeh said. “A lot of times we messed up.”

The Falcons will remain in the lower El Camino league for next year’s season.

Despite their end-of-season losses, the team came out of the season confident having improved under the guidance of Coach Jerome Chung and gained a better team dynamic.

“The season has been really good,” Chu said. “All the seniors left last year, and with the new coach coming in, it certainly exceeded my expectations.”

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