LAGUNA BEACH — The problem wasn’t getting the shots Tuesday afternoon for the Edison High girls’ water polo team.
The problem was converting them, and against a solid opponent like Laguna Beach, that made the difference as the host Breakers captured a 6-4 nonleague win.
Edison, which has been enjoying a very solid early-season run, has already beaten Long Beach Wilson and Rosary to open the season and finished third in the Villa Park Tournament over the weekend. The Chargers (7-2) are ranked No. 4 in the county.
Yet, on Tuesday, they only managed one goal in a first half which ended with them trailing, 3-1.
“We scored one goal in the first half, and that’s not typical Edison water polo,” Coach Diggy Riley said. “We missed a lot of opportunities. [We had] 11 shots into the goalie’s stomach by halftime. We made her look like she was all-world, and I think that was a major difference right off the bat.”
Edison did respond, scoring two quick goals after half. Sophomore Alys Williams connected on both, pulling the Chargers even. And even after Laguna (2-0) responded, senior Danielle Warde scored a five-meter penalty shot to again knot the score at 4-4 with 5:32 remaining in the game.
But Edison couldn’t find the back of the net again.
“We had some great looks and we played great defense,” Riley said. “We held them to five goals [not counting the last-second score], so we did our job. I figure if you can hold any varsity team to seven goals, we’re going to score more than seven, nine out of 10 times. This happened to be the day where we didn’t.”
Williams had the two goals and a pair of steals for Edison, while Warde, a UC Irvine commit, had a goal and a steal. Freshman Melissa Balding added a goal and a steal and senior goalie Clair Babinski, a San Diego State commit, added 13 saves.
Williams is just a sophomore but is a close second to Warde (36) on the team with 32 goals.
“She’s been playing phenomenal,” Riley said. “She’s an all-around player. She’s posting up at two meters, she’s feeding the counterattack, she’s counterattacking. And she’s guarding two meters, like she guarded [Laguna Beach senior and Stanford commit] Lexie [Ross] a bunch in this game. She’s got a great future ahead of her.”
Edison plays at Dana Hills today.
Edison 2, San Clemente 1: The Chargers upset the top-ranked team in Orange County Tuesday behind second-half goals from Brianna Webster and Heather Apodaca. Nikki Fedele and Rachael Larson had assists for Edison (4-1-1).
San Clemente was also ranked No. 1 in the CIF Southern Section Division I preseason poll.
Fountain Valley 4, Westminster 0: Siobhan O’Toole scored twice for the Barons in Tuesday’s nonleague win.
Ocean View finishes second: Ocean View was denied in its quest to win its Tournament of Champions for the first time, falling to Serra of Gardena, 72-65, in the championship game Saturday.
Senior Anthony Brown had a team-high 19 points in the final, while fellow seniors Avery Johnson and Aaron Delgado added 18 and 13, respectively.
Senior guard Vaughn Autry scored a game-high 21 for Serra, ranked No. 6 in Southern California by the Los Angeles times. Ocean View is ranked No. 9.
The Seahawks had reached the final by topping Long Beach Jordan, 73-44, in a semifinal.
“That’s who we are right now, as far as explosiveness,” Coach Jim Harris said. “We put together runs that most people don’t have an answer for. No one can make runs like that for 32 minutes, but we seem to flatten out pretty quickly too and kind of play the scoreboard a little bit. As we mature in this season, [we want to] appreciate and enjoy the ability that we have, but not rest on that. The sky’s the limit for this team.”
Brown, Johnson and Ryan Okwudibonye, as well as Huntington Beach High junior Jordan Castaneda, made the all-tournament team.
The Oilers went 1-3 at the prestigious tournament, although all three losses were by single-digits.
Marina 83, Laguna Hills 51: Senior guard Brendan Holmes had a game-high 27 points for the Vikings in their opening-round win of the Orange Optimist Holiday Basketball Classic, Tuesday night at Westminster high. The Vikings play their second-round game at 6 tonight.
Brethren Christian 58, Woodbridge 53: Senior forward Austin Loeb had a game-high 21 as Brethren Christian improved to 6-0 Tuesday at the Irvine World News/Gary Raya Classic tournament.
Fountain Valley 64, La Puente 51: Senior Dalton Daniels led the Barons (4-5) with 17 points in Tuesday’s nonleague win.
Huntington Beach 59, Los Alamitos 43: The Oilers got 19 points from sophomore point guard Kelsey Minato, along with 17 from sophomore guard Maya Kennedy, in Tuesday’s nonleague win.
Hawkins excels: Edison’s Weston Hawkins pinned four opponents and won the 189-pound championship Saturday at the Chargers’ “Bash at the Beach” tournament.
Hawkins also finished second to Tesoro’s Sean Datte (171-pound champion) for upper-weight MVP honors.