Pitman High girls water polo, which had already solidified a spot in the postseason, came in to Thursday's crosstown game against Turlock with a lot of confidence. That confidence was soon shaken, however, when the Bulldogs pulled off a 5-4 victory.
“Well, we are competitive, we knew we had a chance and could beat them and we fixed the flaws,” said Turlock girls head coach Sonja Raynes. “Part of the plan was to catch them by surprise and capitalize on that and they are great players and can adjust, but if we go up by some goals we will take it.”
“Weak teams blame the outcome of the game on the outside influences, the refs, or the crowd,” said Pitman girls head coach Michaela Solario. “Strong teams realize that if they don't play to their potential every time they get in the water the potential to falter is always there.”
Turlock finished the year in third place in the Central California Conference with a 6-4 posting, barely missing the playoffs.
“I am not going to call a bad season a bad year because the girls worked so hard and progressed and that must be good,” said Raynes. “So we beat some great teams in the second half and that’s good. We had freshman starters and some sophomores as well played a lot.”
It was a back breaking game with very little scoring.
Pitman’s Chelsea Adwere Boateng finished with two of the teams four goals.
The unsung hero, Lucy Deitz, who normally does not score much as an offensive threat, got the counter attack with her speed and scored from the outside for the game winner in the final minute despite Pitman’s late goal to cut it to one.
“That is what happened to us against Turlock,” Solario said. “They came out ready to play and had a great game. I feel like defensively my girls did a great job, some of the shots were great and went in.”