Girls’ water polo comes up short after tough match

photo 2 (1)By Jack McDermott
Online Managing Editor

Girls’ varsity water polo (ranked 34 in state) came out strong against Palatine (ranked 11 in state) while carrying the momentum from their great win against Hersey, but ended by coming up just short 5-4.

In the first quarter, Prospect played well, but had a hard time scoring on the Palatine goalie, who was 6”4’ and had a long enough wingspan to cover the whole net.  

“What we need to do against teams that play really strong defense is have much stronger outside shots, so we will be working a lot on shots coming up,” head coach Natalie Rasor said.

However, in the second quarter, Prospect started playing at Palatine’s level and ended the quarter winning 3-2.  This lead did not give as much momentum as it should have however, because Palatine ended the quarter by scoring right before the buzzer, making them up by one.

“Scores in water polo are typically a lot higher than what you saw tonight so having a one point lead is not a for sure win at all,” Rasor said. “In order to hold the lead, you have to be able to up the intensity as you go, and unfortunately, Palatine just brought the intensity to a whole new level, and we just didn’t answer it going forward.”

Palatine quickly followed up with another goal to tie it up early in the third and then scored again to make it 4-3 at the end of the third.  Prospect had multiple breakaways this quarter but could not seem to capitalize.

“I thought we could have shot harder shots because some of them were straight at her after half,” junior Danielle

McCallister said.

However, Prospect kept their heads up into the fourth quarter and tied it up

photo 1 (1)

with about two minutes left.

“We were working on steals and playing heads up defense; we wanted to make sure that we were aware where the ball was and make sure we got the ball should the other team have a bad pass,” Rasor said.

The game looked like it was going to go into overtime, with both teams playing extremely tough defense, but in the end, Palatine won a scramble near the Prospect goal and scored with only 2.54 seconds left.

“We knew that if we won this game, it would be huge for us in terms of us moving up in the standings,” Rasor said.  “However, we never look at that and say that’s our goal. We want to play for us and play for our team and our game.  We don’t want the standings to make us nervous, we want to fuel ourselves internally.”