Women’s water polo improve win streak to four in home blowout


A Bear Cub defender forces a hasty decision from a Sacramento City player.

Isaiah Cappelen, Staff Writer

The Santa Rosa Junior College Women’s water polo squad pushed its winning streak to four games, crushing the Sacramento City Panthers 17-4 on Oct. 3.

The box score reflects a dominant  game played by the Bear Cubs. They showcased aggressive offensive attacks and stout defensive play. They came out the gate firing and didn’t take their foot off the gas until the clock read double-zero.

From the first drop of the ball, Santa Rosa was in control. A couple of scores from SRJC forwards propelled them to a 4-0 lead midway through the first quarter. Two more goals at the end of the quarter, including an impressive throw through the opposing goalie’s hand had Santa Rosa holding a commanding 6-1 lead at the break.

Although it was just the beginning of their conference game, the Bear Cubs were in good spirits and smiling on the sideline. They had a different kind of confidence riding their three game win streak, as opposed to the last time they played at home.

“Our team cohesion is substantially better,” said head coach Joey Doyle. “After a rough start to the season we’ve really started to play well with each other.”

Santa Rosa continued their great teamwork and offensive dominance quickly in the second quarter by scoring with ease on their first possession.

Santa Rosa went up 9-1 after a few strong defensive stops and goals on offense. It’s easy for teams to take their foot off of the gas after establishing a large lead, but Doyle exemplified why he’s the right man for the job and kept his players engaged in the fight.

Doyle took a time out to draw up a play just before halftime.The Bear Cubs came out of the break looking to score. The first attempt missed, but a Bear Cub forward was there to punch in the floating ball, giving Santa Rosa a commanding 10-2 lead at halftime.

Offense wasn’t the only highlight for the Cubs during yesterday’s game. After allowing double digit scoring efforts from opponents at the beginning of the season, their defense was much improved. That side of the ball was the most impressive aspect of Santa Rosa’s victory as they allowed only four scores all day.

The suffocating defense gave Sacramento no chance to score. Bear Cub goalie Kelly Birkland did a spectacular job defending the net and great coverage forced Panthers players to take contested shots all game.

“We’re catching fire at the right time, hopefully we can continue this right into playoffs next month,’’ Doyle said.

The Bear Cubs look to extend their winning-streak to five games at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 10 at the Quinn Swim Center against San Joaquin Delta.