Making waves

Patterson water polo gets back on track with an impressive performance against Livingston. The girls dominated, winning 16-1, and the boys used a strong third quarter to claim an 11-8 victory.

The girls experienced role reversal from Monday’s game against El Capitan. They were the team without any reserves in Merced and Wednesday they were the team lending a player to their opponent.

“It’s hard when you get two totally different versions of your team. They made great plays on the fastbreak and that has to continue,” said girls assistant coach Gabriel Ortiz.

The boys’ adjustments made the difference as a second half comeback brought them back to their winning ways.

“They adapted to how the other team [Livingston] was playing them. I think they just evolved to beat how the other team was playing them,” said boys’ assistant coach Whitney Lindsey.

The Tigers third quarter surge was led by stellar defensive play from Luke Verhaegen shutting down the Livingston offense.

“After the first quarter, putting Luke on their best offense player really opened up the game for us,” said head coach Valerie Jamieson.

Verhaegen is usually one of the top scorers on the team and his commitment to the defensive end opened plenty of opportunities for other players to fill up the stat sheet, and that led to Justin Leon tallying five goals in the third quarter to erase a three-goal deficit at halftime.

“Once we were able to get him in the right spots on the field, he was able to get those goals. The boys have really perfected that backhand shot and it came in handy today,” said Jamieson.

They scored three goals on a backhand shot.

In Monday’s game against Atwater the girls won 11-10 in overtime, Claire Pierce scored the winning goal in OT.

“This time, the girls were out of practice, missing a lot of practice last week. They really had to rally together to fight for this game. They played with a lot of heart and true grit,” said head coach Phoebe Skelson.

The boys fell to the Atwater Falcons 19-13.

Upcoming games: September 27 @ Merced, girls will start at 4 p.m. followed by the boys. September 29 v. Buhach Colony girls will start at 4 p.m. followed by the boys.

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