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KEVIN SULLIVAN, , FILE: KEVIN SULLIVAN, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Laguna Beach's Aria Fischer is back with the Breakers after spending last season playing for the U.S. team. As a sophomore in 2014-15, she had 44 assists and 44 steals for Laguna Beach.

Girls water polo preview 2016-17: Top five players to watch

STAFF WRITER

OCVarsity’s list of the top five players to watch in the 2016-17 season:

TOP 5 PLAYERS TO WATCH

Val Ayala, Foothill: The sharp-shooting attacker recently made the U.S. team for the FINA youth world championships in December. Look for the junior to improve on her 58-goal output from last season.

Aria Fischer, Laguna Beach: The Olympic gold medalist center will draw plenty of attention from defenses at 2 meters, but her game isn’t limited to scoring. The senior racked up 44 assists and 44 steals as a sophomore, and has a sidekick in Bella Baldridge.

Myna Simmons, Orange Lutheran: Coach Steve Carrera calls the senior and recent UCLA signee a hybrid between Kelsey Tyler and Emma Skelly, the Lancers’ stars from last season. Translation: She can do it all.

Grace Thawley, Mater Dei: The All-County left-hander led the Monarchs in goals (75), assists (42) and steals (44) last season as a sophomore. Her numbers could be scary as a junior.

Bayley Weber, Los Alamitos: The junior and transfer from Rosary made the U.S. squad for the FINA youth World Championships. She has been an under-the-radar standout the past two seasons but could break out this season.

Contact the writer: dalbano@scng.com


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