Tritons' COVID Comeback at the UCI Fall Invitational
This past weekend, our lady tritons returned to the playing field for the first time since March 2020 and boy was it a fantastic weekend! The teams were split into an A and a B team, but both teams played their hardest. For some it was their first time playing water polo ever, and for others it was a nice ease back into the sport.
UCSD B started the weekend with a fight against UCI on Saturday and although they ultimately lost, they had some great defense against the Anteaters. They were able to shut down counters early on in the game and were able to put some goals on the board. Nelly El-Sakkary scored 3 goals with 3 attempts, and other players that scored were Nina Matusiak with her first 2 goals as a Triton and Jaime Van Rensburg scoring her first ever goal in water polo. Although the final score was 11-6 with UCI winning, our Lady Tritons fought hard. For their second game of the day, UCSD B and UCSD A mixed together and then some players mixed with UCI to create a fun scrimmage against friend and foe. On Sunday UCSD B played UCSB B and UCSB A and even though they lost both games 2-14 and 1-14 respectively, they played extremely well and focused on improving their individual skills while in a game setting. UCSD B had a great start to the pre-season this past weekend at UCI.UCSD A had a fantastic weekend and ended up going undefeated in the first tournament of this school year. Our Lady Tritons started strong on Saturday against UCSB B where players Amanda Martilla, Sheccid Duchac, Gaia Hinds, Natalie Kaplanyan, Sarah Horne, Julia Derunes, and Ryan Carmody all scored and ended the game with a final score of 12-2. On Sunday UCSD A had a good competition against UCSB A for their first game of the day. UCSD A was able to shut down the UCSB A team’s main strategy of countering, effectively shutting down their offense early on. This allowed UCSD A to hold on to the lead and end with a final score of 9-5 with a whopping 12 blocks from goalie Lian Lumada . For their second game of the day, UCSD A went up against UCLA and struggled with scoring in the first half of the game and ended up being down in the first quarter; luckily UCSD A was able to take back the lead and win the game to remain undefeated for the tournament.
After this weekend, our Lady Tritons will be back in the pool to keep practicing for upcoming tournaments in Winter quarter. This tournament showed both teams what skills need to be improved upon and now both teams will prepare for the UC Davis tournament in February 2022.