Still looking for their first conference victory of the season, the Lancers water polo team fell to conference rival Mt. San Antonio College 10-2 on Wednesday at the PCC Aquatic Center.
The Lancers, still recovering from injuries, could not handle the defensive pressure from the Mounties, losing their fourth straight game.
“We’re learning how to cope with all the injuries,” said team captain Mariana Silva. “We try to get around it and do the best we can. I think we’re starting to really come together.”
The Lancers were able to get freshman defender Scarlett Bonilla and utility player Jazmine Hernandez back in the water after missing last week’s game due to injuries.
“We’re really glad to have Scarlett and Jazmine back in the pool,” said head coach Terry Stoddard. “Their timing was a little off, but we’re always better with those two in the pool.”
The conference leading Mounties showed why they’re undefeated in conference play with an early 6-0 lead after the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Lancers showed a big improvement on the defensive end. Freshman center-forward Stephanie Velasco recorded an early steal at the six minute mark, but could not capitalize on the offensive end.
“We’re all improving defensively,” Velasco said. “Compared to the beginning of the season we’ve improved a lot. Everyone knows where they should be and everyone knows they’re responsibilities we just have to work on our execution.”
A bright spot in the Lancers play had to be the defensive play of Stephanie Velasco. Velasco led the Lancers with two goals and five steals and Scarlett Bonilla added five steals and one assist.
“We looked at that scoreboard and we told ourselves that we had to get on the board,” Silva added. “We had to score in the fourth, our pride would not let us go scoreless. We played pretty well against the number one team in the conference, we never backed down.”
Sophomore utility player Emily Randall led the Mounties with three goals.
“We are getting better,” Stoddard added. “We’re going to finish strong. It’s too bad that we haven’t been at full strength, but we’re a pretty close-knit group and we’re only going to get stronger and stronger.”
The Lancers water polo team will be back in the water Friday as they battle Cuesta College in the Battle at the Beach Tournament. The game starts at 8 a.m. at Cypress College.