Boys’ water polo falls to Monta Vista, 10-4

Mira Ahmad, Staff Writer

The Palo Alto High School boys’ water polo team (1-2-0) suffered a disappointing loss against Monta Vista (2-0-0), 10-4, on Tuesday night at Paly.

The Matadors jumped off to a frenzied start as their utility player and captain Alex Bagdasarian (’11) scored three goals against the Vikings in the first quarter.

“They got three goals real quick and we kinda fell into a hole after that,” Paly driver and captain Ken Wattana (’11) said.

Wattana responded with a goal early in the second quarter, giving the Vikings a brief glimmer of momentum. However, strong play from the Matadors’ goalie, Andrew Sabour (’11), kept the Viking offense at bay. Monta Vista went into the locker room with an intimidating four point lead.

During the second half, Paly and Monta Vista swapped goals, until the score was 7-3. For Paly, goals came from both Aaron Zelinger (’12) and Quinn Rockwell (’13).

In the fourth quarter, Monta Vista kept its foot on the gas, scoring three goals to Paly’s one, leaving the final score at 10-4.

The Vikings, despite their stronger offense in the second half, were not able to crack Sabour’s goal tending.

“We needed to play more aggressive, take more shots,” Paly head coach Giovanni Napolitano said.

Paly players agreed with Napolitano’s sentiments.

“We wanted to go out there and set the tone with our offense, but we didn’t really manage to do that,” Wattana said.

For Monta Vista players, the win was an affirmation of their hard work, and a solid start to the season ahead.

“We came out and played probably one of the best games we have played all year,” Matador head coach Ron Freeman said.

Freeman believes that the Vikings will improve as their season goes on.

“They are a young group, and a strong group, [and] they’re gonna get better,” Freeman said.

The Vikings’ next game is against Homestead High School at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday at Paly.