Ladies Come Out Stinging

Jason Burch

The Lady Hornets water polo team entered the 2015 season just as they finished their previous campaign, going undefeated to win the Saddleback College Invitational Championship over the weekend.

With the four victories to begin this season, Fullerton has now won 40 consecutive matches spanning all the way back to the 2013 season.

The tournament began on Friday and saw Fullerton play two matches before the night was over.

The Lady Hornets took on Rio Hondo in the afternoon, defeating the Road Runners by a score of 20-4.

Later that evening the returning state champions took on Palomar and found similar success, defeating the Comets 18-3.

FC played the final two games on Saturday. In the semifinal game, the Lady Hornets matched their previous game’s goal total, putting away the host Saddleback Gauchos 18-5.

The final was a bit more tightly contested than the previous three contests, but FC prevailed without much of a scare 12-6 over the Grossmont Griffins to take home the tournament trophy.

The Lady Hornets only returned seven players from their (35-0) CCCAA Championship squad from last season, with 12 freshman picking up the slack. Head Coach Gabriel Martinez was impressed with how the freshman heavy team responded to their first test, but acknowledged room for improvement.

“We played pretty well, but it was the first game of the year so there were some jitters involved,” said Martinez.

A trio of freshman were the top tournament scorers. Shannon Tully and Marissa Vaccher led with nine goals, while Hart Garcia finished with eight.

“This year our freshmen are having a big input on our team, they are getting into the flow and understanding what the expectations are here.”

Martinez praised the play of Tully and fellow freshman, goalie Megan Siemsen throughout the tournament.

Fullerton will face off against Saddleback again Wednesday at home, with a 3 p.m. start time.