Women’s Water Polo Wins Third Consecutive Amanda McDonald Tournament

By Noah Glosson, Sports Editor

// Thirty-six wins and counting. The Lady Dons proved once again why they are number one in Northern California with another illustrious tournament victory.

   Led by a vigorous and dynamic offense, the women’s water polo team rolled through the Amanda McDonald Invitational in Menlo Park, capturing their third consecutive championship on Sept. 21. 

   The Lady Dons opened play against Carlmont High School on Friday, Sept. 20. In addition, head coach Misha Buchel called up three freshman “amigos”  from the JV squad. Using its powerful depth, Acalanes advanced to the tournament quarterfinals by destroying Carlmont 20-1. Freshman Mazie O’Hare led the way with four goals and Audrey Cox made seven saves defending the cage.

   It’s super awesome to see them get playing time,” senior Zoe Benisek said. “While playing on varsity as a freshman is super intimidating, it’s awesome to see them learn and grow as players.”

   The Lady Dons picked up right where they left off against Carlmont with an impressive victory over Castilleja 17-5.  Senior Jewel Roemer notched six goals while sophomore Heidi Heffelfinger added four. 

   The Lady Dons faced a formidable Central Coast Section (CCS) powerhouse in Soquel on Saturday, Sept. 21.

   Led by juniors Claire Rowell and Alana McCartney, Acalanes punched its ticket to the finals with a 16-8 victory.  Rowell notched a team-high five goals with McCartney scoring three. The Lady Dons faced NorCal powerhouse Sacred Heart Prep in the afternoon for the championship.

   With confidence and consistency, the Lady Dons cruised past the Gators 15-6 to complete the three-peat in blowout fashion. 

   “That was definitely the first big game of the season and moving toward NCS will be pretty influential,” Benisek said.

   In the end, the Lady Dons outscored their opponents 68-20. Roemer led the team with 14 goals and McCartney scored 11. Junior Alex Mould finished with team-highs of nine assists and 13 steals. 

   League play begins tonight for Acalanes, as they face off against Campolindo on the road. 

  Going forward, Benisek believes the team will need to remain consistent throughout the difficult season for future rematches.

   “Teams are going to learn and improve from this so we need to as well,” Benisek said. 

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