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Turlock polo edges out Atwater
Bulldogs boys in three-way tie for first in CCC
turlock water polo pic1
Turlocks Jared Bernardi prepares to score off a 5-meter shot during the Bulldogs' match against Atwater Tuesday evening. - photo by JON TERRY/The Journal

Both the Turlock boys and girls water polo teams found victory Tuesday in the Bulldogs' home pool when they hosted Central California Conference foe Atwater.

The Turlock boys team didn’t let Atwater’s nearly undefeated record get in the way of their play when the Bulldogs beat the Falcons, 22-15.

Turlock boys head coach Nicholas Serratos said his team, now 6-2 in league and in a three-way tie for first place, has seen it all at this point and is ready for anything.

“We know [Atwater] is a good team, they probably have the best player in the league,” Serratos said. “Whenever the game gets close, we know what to do and how to handle ourselves.”

While Atwater managed to put the ball away quite a few times, it wasn’t enough for the Bulldogs’ killer offense, which put up 13 points in the second half alone.

Turlock’s leading scorer of the evening was senior Zachary Glidden with over seven goals.

“The way we play is we keep scoring,” Serratos said. “You gotta catch us if you want to win.”

The Bulldogs’ varsity girls polo squad also took home the win, beating out Atwater 14-12 and bringing their record up to 5-3 in league.

Going into the second half of the match in a tied game of 6-6, girls head coach Sonja Raynes noticed her team’s improvements.

“I think they were a little more aggressive,” Raynes said. “We focused more on driving, we wanted to get drives and counter attacks and we also just played a little bit smarter.”

The Falcons played a strategic game making use of all of their available time-outs, but the Bulldogs countered it with a strong defense and an even stronger offense.

Even with Atwater creeping in on the fourth quarter offensively, bringing the score to 13-12 in the last minute of the match, the Bulldogs put one more into the back of the net bringing the final score to 14-12.

“We did have too many turnovers,” Raynes said. “But what I think I’d like to take away from this game is [the girls] have poise, they have control, they played aggressive, but they didn’t panic. They didn’t just give in to it and not play smart because they were in panic mode or emotional.”

The Bulldogs will travel to play Merced on Thursday.