PaliHi Water Polo Seeks Tough Foes

PaliHi’s water polo coach Adam Blakis has started the season by challenging his players with two tough tournament and a non-league match against powerful Santa Monica.

At the Conejo Classic in Thousand Oaks on September 9-10, the Dolphins came away with three wins and two losses. They defeated Rio Mesa 14-7, Moorpark 15-12 and Notre Dame 12-9, but lost to Cresenta Valley 13-3 and a rematch with Moorpark, 12-7.

“The second time we played them, we only had an hour rest and they had three,” Blakis said. “We were exhausted.”

Center, left to right, wearing blue caps, Orson Spence, Gabriel Feizbakhsh and Theo Trask mounted a solid defense to aid goalie Michail Melnik (far left). Photo: Ben Trask

Center, left to right, wearing blue caps, Orson Spence, Gabriel Feizbakhsh and Theo Trask mounted a solid defense to aid goalie
Michail Melnik (far left). Photo: Ben Trask

Crespi won the tournament and Moorpark took third.

“Beating Moorpark, a CIF Division 2 team, was huge,” Blakis said. “We are playing a new style of motion offense that really came together as the tournament moved forward. It involves the whole team, and on the first day, every one of our players scored.”

During the tournament, Quinn Godfresen scored 17 goals, with a shooting per-entage of .586. Teammate Gabriel Feizbakhsh hit the net 15 times (out of 30 attempts). Blakis also signaled out Lucas Silva for his exceptional defense. Alternating in goal were senior Brandon Epp and junior Michail Melnik.

Next up, Palisades lost a competitive match to Santa Monica, 10-6, on Sept. 14. Godfredsen was the leading scorer with four goals and Feizbakhsh and Silva each scored once. Epp was in the goal.

Pali’s JV team beat Samo, 12-5. Four players had two goals each, four players had one and all 20 members of the team played.

The varsity Dolphins played in the Malibu tournament last Tursday against Agoura JV, followed by Hueneme, with victories in both matches. Final games were on Saturday, after the News had gone to press.

League play starts with a home match against San Pedro on Sept. 26.

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