YHS water polo team attempts to regain top CIF ranking after good ‘Bull Run’

Colby Estey, No. 4, scores a goal in recent Ayala Tournament. Teammate Luke Franklin, No. 12, assists on the play.

Fresh off its strong showing last weekend in the Bull Run Tournament at Diamond Bar High School, the YHS water polo team continued its winning ways by finishing sixth among 16 highly ranked teams. The Thunderbirds went 2-2 at the Bull Run and their 7-6 overall record is misleading. Considering their opposition, their showing was good enough to hold the California Interscholastic Federation Division 4, No. 1 ranking until they lost to King in mid-September.

“We got knocked out of the top-10 but this tournament should get us some recognition again,” said YHS coach Kevin Womack, who was especially happy about his team’s 8-7 win over Santiago. YHS had lost to them in the recent Ayala Tournament and Womack felt the win showed how much his team has improved. Luke Franklin and Jake Stuart scored three goals each. Jack Wilson and Mitchell Carpenter scored once.

In its wild 14-12 victory over Division-3 opponent Temple City, Stuart and Franklin both scored four times. Frederik Stein had two. Luc Esquer, Nick Elkin, Peyton Pruitt, and Rylee Wagner had one goal each. Stuart added six steals and Esquer had five assists. Stuart came back to score seven goals, with two assists and four steals in a 13-12 loss to Schurr. Franklin recorded four goals. Wilson one goal and Carpenter had 18 saves, four assists, and three steals.

Franklin led YHS with eight goals in a 15-14 shootout loss to Rio Mesa. Stuart had four goals, five assists and six steals. Wagner added two goals.

“Rio Mesa was a very strong team that has beaten some very tough opponents this season,” said Womack. “We played well but couldn’t quite outmatch their offensive power even with our best offensive showing of the year. As always, our defense was our defining factor. Tough, competitive tournament. Overall, it was a great weekend.”

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