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Crescenta Valley High girls' water polo routs La Serna, 15-3

Water polo: No. 1 Falcons bring their best in lopsided victory at PCC.

February 01, 2013|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com

PASADENA — An exclamation of “that's beautiful water polo” rang out from the Crescenta Valley High girls' water polo team's bench late in the second quarter of a CIF Southern Section showdown against La Serna Friday.

It was the first of several compliments Falcons Coach Brent Danna shouted to his team in the middle of the game – a 15-3 blowout in his team's favor – at Pasadena City College.

“I was actually looking for a reason to get mad at the girls today,” Danna said. “I wanted to kind of get on them a little bit, but I couldn't come up with a reason.”

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It was a very impressive win for Crescenta Valley after it battled La Serna, which is ranked No. 3 in Division IV, before pulling out a dramatic 13-12 overtime victory last season.

“We expected a very hard, solid game,” said CV's Katie Benson, who had two goals, three assists and five steals in the game. “We just kept pushing it because we knew at any given time they could come back, especially after last year — beating them in overtime — we also had that to motivate us.”

Offensively, the Falcons, who are ranked No. 1 in Division V, got it done with movement and superb passing, as 11 of their goals were assisted.

“We're always looking to make the cross pass on the weak side of the pool,” Danna said. “The first quarter we didn't hit it, so we talked about it in between quarters. We started doing the driving and the next thing you know we're hitting those open girls and boom, boom, boom we're scoring goals like crazy.”

CV was just as impressive on defense, as it shut out La Serna in the second quarter and didn't let up from there. In the end, Crescenta Valley held a 31-20 shot advantage and forced 16 turnovers to its six.

Benson, Danna and Ashley Taylor, who finished with a game-high five goals for CV, all said how much their team loves playing in a big pool, like the one at Pasadena City College.

“We're definitely trained to swim in bigger pools because our coach swims us crazy everyday,” Benson said. “We love playing in bigger pools because it really shows how trained and how well conditioned we are.

“Honestly, playing in the big water really helps because CIF is going to be big for us,” said Taylor, who also had two assists. “It's nice to be playing someone at our level coming into CIF.”

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