In its first true test of the early 2018 season, the USC women’s water polo squad took down each of its four opponents in the UCSD Triton Invitational in La Jolla over the weekend.Photo by Emily Smith | Daily TrojanWhile the Women of Troy had already racked up three impressive wins — the team outscored opponents 59-3, including two shutout wins — on the season heading into this tournament, they knew that this performance would truly set the tone for their 2018 campaign.“What is the most impressive about this team so far is their unity,” head coach Jovan Vavic said. “Leadership is the key and our captains are leading in and out of the water.”Through the first day of group play, it was business as usual for USC. Taking down Sonoma State and No. 18 San Diego State 13-1 and 14-2 respectively, the Trojans remained a dominant force just as they had been through three games. In both games, the USC defense was absolutely spectacular, holding both teams scoreless until late in the fourth period. Thanks to an impressive combined effort from goaltenders senior Victória Chamorro and junior Amanda Longan, who both notched double digit save outings, the Trojans allowed only 3 goals on the day. Offensively, freshman driver Paige Hauschild led the way for the squad, picking up 4 goals in both games including a first half hat trick against Sonoma State.“She’s one of the best young players, not only in the country, but in the entire world,” Vavic said. “For [Hauschild], the sky is the limit”.While USC found smooth sailing through its first two matches, they were tested greatly in Sunday’s elimination round matches against No. 7 UC Irvine and No. 4 UCLA.With Chamorro back in net for the Trojans, the team fought an up and down battle against the Anteaters. Fighting on with only a slight lead throughout the match, Chamorro helped close the door with 13 saves. Building off her first two games, Hauschild again led the squad with two goals while captain Brianna Daboub picked up her 100th career goal on a critical first-half strike. Senior utility player Annika Jensen notched the seventh and final goal for USC, clinching a 7-5 victory and a date with crosstown rival UCLA in the finals.In the championship match late Sunday, USC never once fell behind the Bruins. Putting the cherry on top of an incredible tournament, Hauschild again led the Trojans with two more goals while Daboub had a couple key scores of her own. The turning points of the game came on penalty tries both teams earned in the second and third periods respectively. While Longan came up huge in stopping UCLA’s attempts late in the first half, USC’s sophomore driver Denise Mammolito was successful in her attempts in the third. This 2-goal swing gave the Trojans all the momentum they needed to finish off the Bruins and take home their fifth-straight Triton Invitational Championship.
VALENCIA – Valencia High’s boys’ soccer team was nearly perfect against top-seeded Santa Barbara in the second round of the Southern Section Div. II playoffs Tuesday. Then, with just over two minutes remaining, disaster struck. A defensive breakdown left Juan Martinez alone in front of the net, and his goal lifted the top-ranked Dons (24-3-3) to a 2-1 victory at Valencia. “I’m very confident from that area,” said Martinez, who has 20 goals. As well he should be. “Anybody inside the 6-yard box should score a goal, especially someone like him, who’s one of the best players around,” Valencia goalkeeper Craig Jaffe said. “There wasn’t much I could do, but I did what I could to block it.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant Valencia (7-11-4) managed just three shots on goal – none in the second half – but played terrific defense, as has been its style, until that crucial late mistake. “When someone like Juan Martinez gets the ball that close, it’s not a guarantee, but let’s just say we’re confident when he does,” Santa Barbara assistant coach Alfredo Martinez said. It ended a terrific playoffs for Valencia, which won just six regular-season games, then upset Royal of Simi Valley in the opening round of the playoffs. “You played your hearts out,” coach Tony Scalercio told the Vikings when the game ended. “At the beginning of the season, no one expected much from us, and at first, we lost a lot of games because we were using a new system,” Jaffe said. “But today we showed we can play well against a good team.” J.P. Ybarra gave Santa Barbara a 51st-minute lead from Martinez’s through ball, but Manuel Prado pulled Valencia even six minutes later, finding the lower right-corner in full stride from 25 yards. Gerry Gittelson, (661) firstname.lastname@example.org 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!