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CdM youngsters excel at JO Quals

Youth Scene

Ten-and-under co-ed team, coached by Bandaruk, finishes strong fourth in qualifying for Junior Olympics.

June 06, 2013|By Matt Szabo

The age division is 10-and-under co-ed, and Coach Ted Bandaruk's CdM Junior Polo team truly utilizes that distinction.

"I've got some 9-year-olds, I've got some 8-year-olds, I've even got a 7-year-old," Bandaruk said. "It's a very mixed group."

That youth didn't matter last weekend in the Southern Pacific Zone Junior Olympics qualifying tournament. Bandaruk's team impressed. Despite a No. 9 seeding, CdM finished fourth at Tustin High.

Bandaruk said his team played tough, battling tournament champion Vanguard to a 2-2 halftime tie in one game. Vanguard eventually won the game, 7-3.

CdM most likely made this summer's Junior Olympics in Orange County, though the SoPac Zone is only guaranteed three spots in the championship division in that age group. The SoPac Zone can receive further allocations if other zones throughout the country don't use all of theirs.

CdM featured standout players like goalie Adam Humbert, Josh Anderson, Kyle Jolas, Tristan Hook and Eamon Hennessey. Bandaruk's squad also started two girls, Honnie Vandeweghe-O'Shea and Camille Miras. Honnie is the younger sister of pro tennis player CoCo Vandeweghe, who is slated to play for the Orange County Breakers this summer.

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Bandaruk said in one game, an 18-9 victory over International, Vandeweghe-O'Shea scored eight or nine goals.

"She's my star," he said. "Some of the refs say, 'Why do you call her Honnie (honey) when she's so tough?'"

Other local younger age-group teams found it tough qualifying for the Junior Olympics, set for July 27-30 (boys) and Aug. 1-4 (girls). Newport Beach's 12-and-under boys did clinch a championship division spot with their ninth-place finish in the zone, as did the 14-and-under boys with their eighth-place finish.

"I thought it was a good experience for all of our teams," Newport technical director and head coach Robert Lynn said. "A lot of the younger teams, such as 12-and-under girls and 14-and-under girls, all of them did well as opposed to when they started ... they want to compete now. It was a good weekend."

CdM Aquatics' 14-and-under girls' team clinched a championship division berth with its seventh-place finish. Newport Beach finished ninth; only the top eight teams were guaranteed championship division spots. Lynn said the team should be on a waiting list.

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