Clovis West Water Polo Showcases Offensive Prowess in Win Over East

Samuel Otta scores on a 5 meter shot in the Clovis West Golden Eagles 15 to 8 victory over Clovis East, Sept. 25, 2019. PHOTO BY MICHAEL FORD/CLOVIS ROUNDUP

The Clovis West Golden Eagles boys water polo team kept its stellar start to TRAC play alive, with a decisive 15-8 victory over the Clovis East Timberwolves.

The Golden Eagles offense has flexed its muscles as of late, scoring at least 15 goals in each of its last five games, totaling 80 over that span.

So it wasn’t too much of a surprise that the team started fast against East.

After surrendering the first goal of the match with 3:28 in the first period, the Golden Eagles offense kicked it into high gear, pouring in four goals over the last three minutes of the frame while giving up one more to take a 4-2 lead. 

In the second period, the Golden Eagles showcased what makes them such a potent offensive team, generating chances by moving the ball from one side of the pool to the other, in an effort to keep the Timberwolves defense from settling into its lanes to prevent open shots, something that coach Hilaree Bennett said is a key strategy for her team.

“My goal is to breakdown their defense,” Bennett said. “We want to see speed and controlling the ball on offense and we can control the front court and look for isolations on the weak side.”

West added three unanswered scores in the second period, including a goal that showcased the ball movement Bennett loves to see when Ethan Cole found his fellow attacking teammate Ashton Jenkins with a pass across the pool, providing him a wide open net to deposit the ball from point-blank range.

The Golden Eagles unleashed a torrent of goals in the third period, outscoring the Timberwolves 5-1 with three coming from utility Samuel Otta, including one on a free five-meter shot after a Clovis East foul.

Otta notched another in the scoring column with his fourth of the contest on a slow lob over the goalkeepers head to make the scoreline 13-5 with six minutes left in the game.

East added two goals from Lochan Zwashka with less than three minutes left, but it was too little, too late for the Timberwolves to use that momentum for a possible comeback.

The Golden Eagles boast an 11-2 overall record now, including a 2-1 mark in TRAC play as the team will prepare to head to Buchanan to face the Bears on the road on Wednesday.

Clovis East falls to 5-4, still winless in TRAC competition, with a chance to earn its first victory at home against Clovis October 2.

Michael graduated from Fresno State in May 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in print journalism. During his time at the university, he served as sports and managing editor for The Collegian, Fresno State’s student-run newspaper. In addition to the Clovis Roundup, Michael has written for The Fresno Bee, the Kingsburg Recorder and Selma Enterprise. He has a passion for sports and can be found on the sidelines at local games, bringing the citizens of Clovis the athletics news they deserve.