Sailors do it in overtime

Newport Harbor starts slow, but edges Back Bay rival Corona del Mar to win in Sea Kings' pool.

December 17, 2010|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza,
(Kent Treptow / Daily…)

CORONA DEL MAR — Do not ask Newport Harbor High Coach Bill Barnett what his record is in the Battle of the Bay in girls' water polo. He has been a part of so many against Corona del Mar that it is hard to keep track of the wins and losses.

The longtime coach is sure of one thing every time the Sailors and Sea Kings meet in the pool.

"[It's] always a one-goal game," Barnett said with a grin.

Barnett could smile on Friday night because he was on the winning side of another nail-biter with the Sea Kings.

On a rainy night at CdM, the Sailors squeaked out a 6-5 victory in overtime, keeping them undefeated four games into the season. Newport Harbor can thank Elissia Schilling, who recorded the game-winner 59 seconds into the first of two three-minute overtime periods.

Schilling got her first taste of the intense rivalry on the varsity level. She made a big splash at the start and at the end for the Sailors, ranked No. 3 in the CIF Southern Section Division I coaches' poll.


The sophomore recorded Newport Harbor's first and last goals. The initial one sparked a comeback and the final one lifted the Sailors to a thrilling win.

Schilling was not even supposed to take the shot. With the 30-second shot clock expiring, and five meters away from the goal, Schilling unleashed an uncharacteristic shot.

"I'm a backhand girl," said Schilling, referring to her lethal backhanded shot, which she decided against trying because she figured No. 5-ranked CdM expected it.

Schilling went to a shot the Sailors work on in practice, one she rarely takes in games. The sweep shot worked to perfection for Schilling as it hit off the post and went in for a goal.

The Sailors were 3 minutes, 59 seconds away from defeating CdM for the second straight season. They had goalie Sarah Wilkey, who made big save after big save to keep the Sailors ahead.

The Sea Kings could not get anything past Wilkey in the final six minutes of overtime, and they dropped to 1-3 on the season. The other two CdM losses have come against elite teams in Division I, Dos Pueblos of Goleta and Santa Barbara, programs ranked No. 1 and No. 4, respectively.

Dos Pueblos saw the Battle of the Bay as it was waiting to play Los Alamitos right after the CdM-Newport Harbor game.

The way the Sea Kings jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the opening period, they looked unstoppable. Then they managed just two goals in the final 27 minutes of action.

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