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Notes: O.C. stars aim for gold Down Under
There are many girls water polo tournaments to follow but not all are being played in Orange County. Don’t forget Perth, Australia.
Several of Orange County’s top female players are with Team USA at the first-ever FINA world youth (18-and-under) championships.
The U.S. squad features six county high school players, including late addition Stephanie Mutafyan of Los Alamitos.
The squad improved to 2-0 at the tournament with an 8-6 victory against Hungary on Monday. Mutafyan and Mater Dei’s Mackenzie Barr combined for five goals while Laguna Beach’s Makenzie Fischer added one.
The U.S. team left for Perth with high expectations because the players have gained more international experience.
“A few girls and myself have been to Hungary twice already with the team,” Barr said before the trip. “Now, I think we’re ready to finally be involved in a huge tournament because we have gotten so much international playing (experience).”
Barr said the team is aiming for a gold medal.
“We want to win,” the UCLA signee said.
The tournament final is Dec. 9.
Sunny Hills captured its fifth consecutive title at the Santa Ana Valley tournament on Saturday. Senior attacker Kerstin Laye had a strong tournament for the Lancers (5-0), racking up 16 goals, 14 assists and 11 steals.
Rising Yorba Linda finished second to Warren of Downey at the Benson Cup. Freshman Amy Castellano scored a team-high 14 goals in the tournament for the Mustangs (4-1).
Yorba Linda plays at No. 9 Rosary (2-0) in an intriguing nonleague match Thursday at Fullerton College at 4 p.m. ...
Los Alamitos (1-0), Murrieta Valley, El Toro (0-1) and Montebello are the top seeds for the Villa Park Classic, which runs Thursday through Saturday at Villa Park, Huntington Beach, El Toro and El Modena. The final is Saturday at El Toro at 3:30 p.m.
NEW JOURNEY BEGINS
Orange Lutheran plays its first-ever game Tuesday when it takes against Marlborough of Los Angeles at Occidental College at 3:15 p.m.