Girls Water Polo Scores Another Victory Against Northwood

Annie Qiao and Julia Kim

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Girls water polo (5-10) defeated the Northwood Timberwolves 4-2 on Jan. 24 at a home game in January’s Game of the Month. This game is their second victory against Northwood High, having previously beaten the Timberwolves 7-2 on Jan. 18.

“We did really well because they were playing ‘hard defense,’ and we got a lot of shots off. We just kept swimming and focused on doing our personal best as a team,” center Shaivi Bandatmakur said. “We were all star players in the end, though, because we participated as a team, and we won as a team.”

The team was subject to defensive tactics such as drowning and suit-pulling by Northwood’s players. However, they were still able to score several goals and defend themselves, such as when goalkeeper Noora Roushdy was able to block an opposing player from scoring.

“Portola worked really hard today, and I’m really proud of winning this game. I also scored a goal during the game,” defender Haley Truong said.

The game was fast-paced throughout all four quarters, and both sides had strong offensive and defensive players. Nonetheless, the team was able to pull farther ahead and ended strong with a two-point lead. With winter sports coming to a close, girls water polo was able to display its strengths and how much they have improved this season.

“I think Northwood played very physical. I think that our team was up for the challenge. It was a close game all the way ‘till the end. Both teams played very well; we just happened to come out on top,” head coach Brendan Barrow said.

The theme for the Game of the Month was “Tacky Tourist,” and many students watched the game while dressed up in tourist outfits. After the team’s victory, many ASB members and the ASB director, Sarah Dean, were pushed into the pool.

“[The] Athletics Commissioners and some members of ASB decided to jump into the pool because we wanted to congratulate the water polo team in a more interactive way, and we wanted to create a better incentive for the student body to come to January’s Game of the Month,” girls athletics commissioner Gabi Taylor said. “It also helped build more traditions for Portola’s future Games of the Month.”