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CdM falls behind

Boys' Water Polo

Sea Kings lose to Los Alamitos in quarterfinals of South Coast Tournament.

September 21, 2012|By Matt Szabo

CORONA DEL MAR — The game was played in the pool Friday night, but it ended in a football score.

It wasn't really the result the Corona del Mar High boys' water polo team wanted.

CdM suffered a surprisingly lopsided loss in its home pool, falling to the Griffins, 14-6, in the quarterfinals of the South Coast Tournament.

The Sea Kings can now get no better than fifth place. They'll play Long Beach Wilson for the second time this year on Saturday at 8:30 a.m., back at CdM, in a fifth-place semifinal.

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CdM Coach Barry O'Dea had a message to his team during a fairly long postgame talk Friday night. In a way, it was also a challenge.

"I told the guys that I'll be more disappointed if we just come out and tank tomorrow, because we're not in the top four, than I am tonight because of losing this game," O'Dea said. "This is just part of the process. We've got to keep our chins up, come back and fight another day."

The score was close enough in the first half, which ended with Los Alamitos up, 7-5. Then Corona del Mar (3-2) suddenly stopped scoring.

The Griffins (5-0) scored five unanswered goals in the third quarter. Some of them were of the spectacular variety, like when senior Chandler Jarrels struck on a right-wing backhander from about seven meters near the end of the quarter.

Jarrels and fellow senior Max Merrill each scored five goals to pace Los Al. Merrill also made four steals as Los Alamitos tallied 15 steals, compared to just three for CdM.

"I was real happy with the intensity, the patience and the discipline," Griffins Coach Dave Carlson said. "These guys play really good defense anyways, but it was primarily our offense that we were happy about. Our team's defense when they play with passion is solid. I mean, that defense is typically that good all the time. It's the offense, we generally will rush things and be impatient."

Instead it was CdM that struggled offensively. Senior Danny Marshall finally ended the drought, netting a power-play goal with 1:46 left in the game.

It was the Sea Kings' first goal since the second quarter, ending a span of nearly 15 minutes without a goal. For much of the fourth quarter O'Dea left a couple of players down in the offensive end, but the Sea Kings weren't able to get goals in transition.

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