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1st round down for 30-0 Falcons

Water Polo: CV girls' team blows past Fontana, 19-6, in opening round of CIF.

February 15, 2012|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com
  • Crescenta Valley High's Breanna Lawton, left, tries to make a pass while Fontana's Bernice Robles defends Lawton during the CIF Southern Section Division V first-round match on Wednesday.
Crescenta Valley High's Breanna Lawton, left,… (Cheryl A. Guerrero,…)

SOUTH PASADENA — All the Crescenta Valley High girls' water polo team did during the regular season was win.

It seemed to come second nature to the Falcons on Wednesday in the first game of their second season – the CIF Southern Section Division V playoffs.

An unstoppable array of scorers and an unrelenting defense carried third-seeded Crescenta Valley to a 19-6 win over Fontana in the first round at South Pasadena High, where the Falcons (30-0) got all they needed to hear from Coach Pete Loporchio in an early first-quarter timeout.

"After about the first two minutes I tried to get them to adjust in terms of intensity level and execution," said Loporchio, whose team will next meet Los Altos, an 18-10 winner over Riverside Notre Dame on Wednesday, in the quarterfinals on Saturday. "The farther you go into [playoffs] I think the intensity level increases and then the physicality starts to increase. We were trying to get them to be a little more assertive and they did a great job after that and got on a little bit of a roll there."

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The Pacific League-champion Falcons started with a five-meter shot by Sabrina Hatzer at the 6:14 mark of the first quarter and were quickly off on a 5-0 run to begin the match.

Stefanie Loporchio followed Hatzer's five meter with a short-hook lob before Hatzer made it 3-0 on a breakaway off an assist from Elissa Arnold, who moments later stole the ball and started a quick counter that ended with a Hatzer assist to Loporchio for a 4-0 lead at the 4:00 mark. This was all before Fontana got a shot off, as the Falcons opened the game with seven steals in the first three minutes.

Hatzer fed Katie Benson for a goal inside at the 2:52 mark before Fontana got on the board with a five-meter shot by Salena Zapata to make it 5-1 with 1:04 left. Crescenta Valley ended the opening quarter with a Hatzer goal on a breakaway off a pass from goalkeeper Gabriel Isacson set up by a Shannon Hovanesian steal.

"We have to take it one game at a time, we have to focus on what we need to do and how we have to start out the game," said Crescenta Valley high-scorer Sabrina Hatzer (four goals). "We have to push the tempo a little bit and then make adjustments."

The Steelers (15-12), who placed third in the Citrus Valley League, kept the game from getting out of hand in the second quarter, limiting the Falcons to goals by Arnold and Hovanesian (two), while getting scores from Leslie Dove and Zapata for a 9-3 halftime score.

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