Monache girls water polo wins 4th straight game

Monache’s Kambria Weaver takes a shot against Hanford on Tuesday night. Weaver scored 11 goals for the Marauders as they defeated the Bullpups, 19-13, for their fourth straight victory.(Kason Clark)

Marauders race out to a 7-0 lead over Hanford and hold on to win, 19-13; the victory improves Monache’s record to 4-1 this season and extends the winning streak to four straight

PORTERVILLE –  Monache girls water polo has been off to a strong start this season, and that strength carried through on their home turf on Tuesday night against the Hanford Bullpups. Thanks to a hot start, the Marauders took control and never looked back as they went on to win, 19-13.

With the win, the Marauders won their fourth straight match to improve their record to 4-1 early in the season. Monache still has players on its roster new to water polo, so head coach Hilary Johnson was happy to see even more growth in Tuesday night’s victory.

“We’ve made a lot of improvements over the year, we have a very diverse group of athletes,” Johnson said. “There was progress today. There were struggles but overall, they had some good points that they’ve been working on.”

The Marauders started the game strong as they raced out to a 7-0 lead. Skylar Malone scored the first goal of the night on a lob and then Kambria Weaver scored another pair of goals in center. Malone stayed hot with three more goals for a total of four in the first quarter.

“We talked a lot in the first quarter and we had ball movement to start us off,” Weaver said on the start of the match.

Hanford eventually scored, but Monache had an 8-2 lead to end the first quarter. The Bullpups clawed their way back as they cut Monache’s lead to 9-5 late in the half, but Weaver then dominated with four straight goals for the Marauders. Hanford scored to end the half, but Monache held a 13-6 advantage going into the break.

The Bullpups used the third quarter to climb back and cut the deficit to 13-10, but the Marauders did not let go of momentum as Weaver opened the fourth with two straight goals. Hanford responded with two straight goals, but Weaver scored again for her 11th goal of the night. After another Hanford score, Monache ended the match with three straight goals to pull away for the win.

With the win, the Marauders remain hot early in the season with their 4-1 record. But even with the winning streak, Weaver and her teammates plan to not let it go to their heads.

“We weren’t overconfident because when we go into a game overconfident, we end up losing every time,” Weaver said. “We were pretty relaxed for this game. We weren’t really stressed but we also weren’t afraid of the competition.”

Monache boys bounce back against Hanford

The Monache boys water polo was looking to get back on track after going 0-2 in a tournament in Arroyo Grande this past weekend. Thankfully for the Marauders, they got to play at home on Tuesday night in their return to the Valley. Against the Hanford Bullpups, the Marauders used strong defense to win, 15-8.

“We’re happy to be back in the Valley,” Monache head coach Colton Pierce said. “We had a great result and a great team effort tonight so it was awesome.”

The Marauders and Bullpups exchanged goals to open the night as Monache held a 3-2 lead late in the first quarter. Monache extended the lead to 5-3 thanks to goals from Andrew Baxter and Parker Cotten, but Hanford scored to end the frame to cut the deficit to one goal.

The second frame saw both teams struggle offensively as Monache’s Carson Kaiser scored the lone goal to extend the lead to 6-3. Kaiser stayed hot to start the third as he scored two more goals in the center to push the lead to 8-3. A goal from Baxter on a free throw then made it a 9-3 lead.

The Bullpups were able to cut the deficit to four goals early in the fourth, but the Marauders ended the night strong with five more goals to pull away. Kaiser finished the night leading his team with six goals. The Marauders are now back in the win column as they improve their record to 4-3 this season and snap a two-match losing streak.

“It feels good and I’m really glad because we had a tough tournament this past weekend,” Kaiser said about getting back over .500. “That really brought our mood down, but this win really brought us back up.”

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