Monday, November 12, 2012

ALL-STATE TEAMS from the State Championship Tournament


Reed Hendrickson  -  Bellevue
Marco Stanchi  -  Bellevue
George French  -  Bellevue
Porter Sale  -  Curtis
Nolan Peterson  -  Curtis
Lee Griffin  -  Newport
Sam Peterson  -  Mercer Island


Scott Bowers  -  Bellevue
Stuart McClelland  -  Bellevue
Chandler Arrington  -  Curtis
Griffin Collins  -  Curtis
Will Helmer  -  Newport
Mack Barry  -  Newport
David Rudokas  -  Mercer Island


Liam Naughton  -  Bellevue
Giles McIntire  -  Curtis
Dimitri Popoff  -  Newport
Connor Gullstad  -  Mercer Island
Thomas Henline  -  Auburn Riverside
Matty Benabid  -  Auburn Riverside
Adam Benabid  -  Auburn Riverside
Hunter Arnold  -  Auburn Mountainview
Brady Gardner  -  Auburn Mountainview
Bennon VanHoof - Enumclaw
Thomas Petersen  -  Enumclaw
Aaron Beck  -  Puyallup


Lee Griffin  -  Newport


Reed Hendrickson  -  Bellevue


Farrah Kunkel  -  Newport

Congratulations to these players and all the Washington high school water polo players who put in the time and effort and continue to toil in anonymity.
Polo On!

Final 2012 Boys High School Water Polo Rankings

  1. Bellevue
  2. Curtis
  3. Newport
  4. Mercer Island
  5. Auburn Riverside
  6. Auburn Mountainview
  7. Enumclaw
  8. Puyallup
  9. Lakes
  10. Peninsula

Defending a championship is difficult business.  After last year, Bellevue didn't seem likely to be a repeat champion simply because they graduated so many seniors that made up the majority of their scoring.  Apparently this year's team didn't get the message, or if they did, they refused to accept it.  Bellevue cruised through group play with wins over Lakes and Enumclaw and then dispatched Auburn Mountainview in the quarterfinals.  Newport posed stiff competition in the semifinals but came up short and Bellevue advanced to the finals.  Championships might be decided in the last game of the season, but they are usually earned with sweat, dedication, and commitment between seasons.  It's a trait of a winning program and a testimony to this young Wolverine team.  Even with focus and dedication, there are surprises and obstacles to overcome along the way, like having a key player fall ill and miss the quarterfinals and semifinals. Champions find a way to adapt and overcome.  Teammates rise to the occasion and support each other.  In the finals,  Bellevue's defense shut down Curtis in the first half and the Wolverine offense took advantage of man up situations to secure victory.  Bellevue won with teamwork, execution of the fundamentals, a balanced attack, and defense. (It also helps when the Defensive MVP of the tournament is your goalie who can force the best of shooters to rethink their shots).  Congratulations to the Bellevue Wolverines for doing it the right way, winning the 2012 State Championship and earning the No. 1 ranking.  The Curtis Vikings came to the State Tournament with expectations of winning and looked strong with early wins in group play and in the quarterfinals against Auburn Riverside. A semi-final match up against Mercer Island had the early morning crowd pumped up with anticipation as the Vikings came out strong with a lockdown defense that shut out the Islanders in the first half and had them reeling. Mercer Island tried to make a game out of it in the second half but Curtis was able to execute under pressure to secure the win and an appointment in the championship game.  In the final, the Vikings were never able to get their offense on track and fell short of winning the title, but they do move up to No. 2 in the final rankings. ---  (At Curtis, the water polo program is about tradition, commitment, hard work, team development and winning. Most years, anything short of a championship is a disappointment, but in many respects the 2012 campaign may have been their greatest season.  Senior captain #15 Porter Sale is a four year starter and ended his junior season with hopes of leading his team to the title for his senior season, but life sometimes gets in the way of one's plans.  You see, Porter was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma last spring and his senior water polo season seemed implausible. Porter completed his chemo treatments late last summer and by late September was back in the water even though he was still receiving radiation treatment.  At Curtis, captain requirements include leading by example, encouraging teammates, earning respect, and exhibiting a positive attitude.  Porter, you did your job beyond anyone's expectations as your teammates rallied together to support you and make a memorable run at the 2012 title.  Porter, you are a true champion!  Thank you for 4 years of great water polo moments and a lifetime of inspiration.) --- Newport entered the state Tournament as a #6 seed based more on reputation than results (just sayin').  It turns out that the #6 seed was a little too low.  Auburn Mountainview had the misfortune of having Newport in their bracket and ran into a Newport team that looked more like a #1 seed.  Newport started slow in the quarterfinals before overwhelming Enumclaw in the second half and advancing to meet Bellevue in the semis.  In the semis, Newport tried to close a 4 point gap in the 4th quarter but fell a point short in their quest.  The most difficult game to play at State is the game for 3rd place (trust me). It was a close contest with Mercer Island all the way, but Newport held on to the lead throughout to finish 3rd at State and No. 3 in the rankings.  Okay Mercer Island, I understand if you are a little disappointed, but considering how far you have come from last season, it is a pretty incredible climb back to elite status.  I'm sure you would like to have that first half back against Curtis and there is no shame is losing to Newport.  It was a very good season for the Islanders and they finish No. 4.  Next year? Maybe.  (Kudos for your game tweets).  For most of the season, some Auburn Riverside fans took issue with their teams' ranking.  It seems most felt that the Ravens deserved to be No. 5 instead of No. 6.  Turns out they were right, but eventually the rankings usually catch up to reality.  A brutal draw placed Auburn Riverside in a bracket game against Mercer Island and a quarterfinal against Curtis where the Ravens' title hopes were dashed.  Not all was lost though;  the Ravens ended the tournament with an overtime victory over the Auburn Mountainview to earn the No. 5 ranking and bragging rights in A-Town.  Well Auburn Mountainview, that places you at No. 6 to end the season.  I know it wasn't what you were hoping for and you probably could have finished higher if Newport would have been in a different bracket, but look how far you've come in the last three years. Your spirit is infectious.  A division title and a ranking as high as #3 for most of the season is pretty respectable.  Enumclaw started the tournament with a 1 point victory over Lakes and then ran head on into the triple whammy of Bellevue, Newport, and Auburn Mountainview.  Ouch!  The Hornets recovered to end the tournament with a 10-6 victory over Puyallup to earn 7th place at State and the No. 7 ranking.  The No. 8 ranking goes to the Puyallup Vikings.  Puyallup opened the tournament with a convincing win over Peninsula before running into an unenviable string of higher seed opponents.  Despite dropping their last four games, the Vikings were competitive throughout the tournament making Mercer Island work hard and coming close to upsetting Auburn Riverside.  Lakes and Peninsula have had a competitive rivalry all season.  They split their regular season games and Peninsula advanced directly to State by winning a tiebreaker with a one point overtime victory over the Lancers.  It only seemed appropriate that these two teams would play one another for 9th place at State.  In another overtime thriller, Lakes prevailed to bump up one spot to No. 9 in the final rankings.  Lakes finished the tournament with 2 wins and narrowly missed out advancing to the quarterfinals in a 1-point loss Enumclaw. The Peninsula Seahawks dropped their first two games at State but recovered for a win over Bainbridge to earn a shot at 9th Place.  Though the Seahawks had to settle for the 10th, they continued to show improvement and finish the season ranked No. 10.
The State Tournament is not just about determining a champion. It's also about showcasing and celebrating high school water polo in Washington. For our water polo community in Washington, it is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. Thank you to all the players, coaches, referees, officials and volunteers that make it all possible. It's been a great ride!

"If you put your effort and concentration into playing to your potential, to be the best that you can be, I don't care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we're gonna be winners."
Coach Dale, "Hoosiers"

The intention of this blog is simply to help create more awareness of high school water polo in Washington. These rankings are unofficial and are in no way intended to diminish the accomplishments of any team. I encourage every team to celebrate their season and accomplishments in their respective divisions and state tournament. Hopefully any bias has been minimal and has been balanced by my ignorance.

Polo On!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

2012 Boys Water Polo State Championships

Bellevue defeats Curtis to win the 2012 Washington State Boys High School Water Polo Championship

Saturday Results


Mercer Island   7    vs.     Curtis  11

Newport 10            vs.     Bellevue  11


11th - 12th      Bainbridge  8      vs.    Emerald Ridge  13

9th - 10th        Peninsula  12      vs.     Lakes  13    OT

7th - 8th          Puyallup  6          vs.     Enumclaw  10

5th - 6th         Aub Riverside  7  vs.    Aub Mountainview  6   OT

3rd - 4th         Mercer Island  8   vs.     Newport  9  

Championship Game

    Curtis  3      vs.     Bellevue   7    

Polo On!  

Friday, November 9, 2012

Quarterfinal Scores for Friday 11/9

Mercer Island  11  vs.     Puyallup  4

Curtis  9                vs.     Auburn Riverside  6

Newport  16          vs.     Enumclaw  2

Bellevue   10         vs.     Auburn Mountainview   5

The quarterfinal matches are in the books and the teams advancing to the semifinals are set.  Mercer Island used an explosive 1st quarter to establish a 5 - 0 lead over Puyallup.  The Vikings were able to slow the Islander attack in the 2nd and 3rd quarter, but could not close the gap falling to Mercer Island 11 - 4.  Overall, a good effort by Puyallup but they could not overcome a stingy Islander defense.   The Curtis Vikings jumped on Auburn Riverside for 4 goals in the 1st quarter and increased their lead to 9 - 3 by the end of the 3rd.  The Ravens tallied 3 goals in the 4th, but it was too late.  Curtis looks strong heading into the their semifinal showdown with Mercer Island.  Enumclaw got off to a good start and had a 1 - 0 lead over Newport at the end of the 1st quarter and was only down 3 - 1 at the half.  The second half was a much different story as the Knights dominated the Hornets and came away with a 16-2 victory.  The defending champion Bellevue Wolverines got off to a fast start with a 4-1 lead over Auburn Mountainview at the end of the 1st quarter.  A strong defensive effort made it difficult for the Lions the rest of the way and the last hopes for a water polo title in A-Town were dashed.  Bellevue advances to the semifinals with a 10 - 5 victory.   League rivals Bellevue and Newport collide in the second semifinal match.  If it's anything like their last game, it will be a memorable playoff classic.

These promise to be the most competitive semifinals in recent memory so come early to get a good seat.  Defense should rule the day.  All four remaining teams appear evenly matched, so it will come down to focus and execution down the stretch to determine the 2012 Champion.  Can't wait!!

Polo On!

Consolation Games

Puyallup  9           vs.     Auburn Riverside  10

Enumclaw  5        vs.     Auburn Mountainview   8 

Semifinal Games for Saturday 11/10

Mercer Island  vs.  Curtis

Newport  vs.  Bellevue

Thursday Playoff Results

Bainbridge  12  vs. Peninsula 18

Emerald Ridge 4 vs. Lakes 7

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Bracket Play Results for Wednesday 11/7

(Winning team is underlined)

Bellevue  24            vs           Lakes  3                             Mercer Is 26         vs     Bainbrdg Is  6

AMntnvw  17          vs           Em Ridge  10                     Curtis  14              vs     Peninsula  3

Enumclaw  12         vs            Lakes  11                          ARiverside  19     vs     Bainbrdg Is  7

Newport  11           vs            Em Ridge   4                     Puyallup  13         vs     Peninsula  7

Bellevue  20            vs            Enumclaw  4                    Mercer Is  14       vs     ARiverside  10

AMntnvw  4          vs             Newport  11                     Curtis  16             vs     Puyallup  6

As expected, the top eight seeds advance to the quarterfinals on Friday, but there was at least one result that didn't go according to the seedings.  We found out that Newport is not just a legitimate threat but a bona-fide title contender.  The #2 seed Lions of Auburn Mountainview had the misfortune of having Newport in their bracket and fell to the Knights by a score of 11 - 4.  The Lions path to the finals now becomes very difficult as they must face Bellevue in the quarterfinals.  Auburn Riverside held their own against Mercer Island until about midway through the 3rd quarter when the Islanders were able to get the lead and pull away in the final quarter.  Now the Ravens will face Curtis in the quarterfinals in what looks to be a great match.

The games need to be played, but Mercer Island and Newport look to have the easiest routes to the semis by virtue of winning their brackets.  From the Committees perspective, the top games to watch in the quarterfinals will be Curtis vs. Auburn Riverside and Bellevue vs. Auburn Mountainview.  Only four teams move on to the semis, so we will see two of the top 6 ranked teams fall out of title contention.  If Bellevue prevails against Auburn Mountainview, we will likely see three North division teams in the semis. 

Polo On!

Quarterfinal Match Ups for Friday 11/9

Mercer Island vs. Puyallup

Curtis vs. Auburn Riverside

Newport vs. Enumclaw

Bellevue vs. Auburn Mountainview

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your Committee speaking.  We are now in final preparation for the 2012 boys High School Water Polo State Championship. At this time, make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright position. Also make sure your seat belt is correctly fastened. Also, we advise you that electronic equipment may be kept on as long as you forward updated scores to the Committee throughout the tournament. Now relax if you can and enjoy the ride!

Yes water polo fans, it's time to determine the 2012 Champion and the State Tournament promises to be one of the most competitive in state history.  The brackets are listed below showing the teams followed by their seeding for the State Tournament.  Simply stated, if you want to advance to the quarterfinals, you need to finish in the top two of your bracket.  Heck, you can even succumb to pressure in one of your games and still have a chance to advance.  Upsets are possible which could create ties within the brackets in which advancement to the next round will be determined by fewest goals allowed.  The quarterfinals will be cross bracket matches between bracket winners and the number two teams from the other brackets.  Saturday will bring the semifinals and finals along with other games determining finishes through 12th place.

This season has been a great year for parity and the top six teams have realistic hopes of becoming the 2012 champion. No team is unbeatable and all have lost to in-state opponents which will make for a very tense and exciting tournament.  From the Committee's perspective, the top seeded teams should advance to the quarterfinals, but an #8 vs. #9 match up between Puyallup and Peninsula promises to be close.  Ironically both the #1 and #2 seeds have tough matches in their brackets,  Matches to keep and eye on are Auburn Riverside (#5) vs. Mercer Island (#1) in bracket A as well as Newport(#6) vs. Auburn Mountainview(#2) in bracket B.  The winners of these games should win their bracket and have a favorable path to the semis.  In bracket C,  Bellevue should advance but will face tough competition in the quarterfinals against either Newport or Auburn Mountainview.  Curtis should win bracket D and advance to the quarters where their likely opponent will be Auburn Riverside, if the Ravens don't win their bracket.

We're talking about youth and playoff pressure so anything can happen, but the Committee would not be surprised to see the top four seeded teams advance to the semis, though Newport (#6) could be the spoiler.  All the teams in the tournament have shown the ability to score but offensive stats can be overrated.  Defense wins championships and the top four teams have consistently played strong defense all year showing the ability to defend the counter attack, pressure the perimeter and defend the hole set.  In addition, they have all won games against other top ranked teams executing their offense when the easy stuff has been taken away. 



                                                   B                                     C                             D

Mercer Island(1)              Auburn Mountainview(2)      Bellevue(3)             Curtis(4)
Auburn Riverside(5)        Newport(6)                           Enumclaw(7)          Puyallup(8)
Bainbridge(12)                 Emerald Ridge(11)              Lakes(10)               Peninsula(9)

Playoff Handicapper

Title Favorites

Mercer Island:  Balanced attack, team defense and big game experience. 

Auburn Mountainview:  Has the defense to keep opponents in check and the offense to put points on the board.  Win the bracket and the rest falls in place.

Bellevue:  Likes the role of the underdog.  Defending champ still improving. Brings both offensive and defensive teamwork to the pool every game and has won pressure games.

Curtis:  It's tradition. Depth, experience, tough defense, and potent offense puts them in the middle of the hunt for the title. 

Legitimate Threats

Newport:   The talent is there but they need a team effort and focus if they want a shot.

Auburn Riverside:  Has the tools but a tough draw and path to the semis.  If they make it there, they might just make it all the way.

Outside Shots

Enumclaw:  Has beat some higher seeded teams this year.  Can score but needs more consistency on defense if they want to get to the semis

Puyallup:  Can make things exciting with their ability to score but not quite ready for prime time against the top six teams

Maybe Next Year

Peninsula:  Showing improvement with a shot to advance to quarters

Lakes:   Tough bracket.  A top 8 finish would be huge.

Emerald Ridge:  This will be a little tougher than the Wild Card Tournament, but great experience for the future.

Bainbridge:  You made it to State.  Play your hearts out!

The objective of the tournament is to determine the champion, but this tournament is also about promoting and celebrating high school water polo in Washington. For our water polo community, it is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. Every team has their own unique story of challenges and accomplishments throughout the season and a loss, though disappointing, should not diminish their achievements. All of the players and coaches deserve our recognition and respect. Regardless of the outcomes, be sure to show your appreciation to all the athletes, coaches, referees, officials and volunteers that make this Championship tournament possible. Enjoy!!!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 11/4/2012

  1. Mercer Island
  2. Bellevue
  3. Auburn Mountainview
  4. Curtis
  5. Newport
  6. Auburn Riverside
  7. Enumclaw
  8. Puyallup
  9. Peninsula
  10. Lakes      10.  Emerald Ridge   (tie)

The regular season is over and now we wait for the State tournament to begin on Wednesday Nov. 7th.  Not much action besides the wild card last week to determine the last three entrants to State.  Mercer Island remains at No. 1 and most likely will be the top seed at State.  Bellevue traveled to Enumclaw and prevailed with a 14 to 9 victory over the Hornets.  Nothing to write home about but good enough to keep the No. 2 ranking.  The Lions of Auburn Mountainview were idle ( I think) and stay put at No. 3.  The Curtis Vikings hosted Bainbridge and coasted to an 18 to 5 victory in their final prep for State.  Newport remains very quiet at No . 5.  I guess we only have to wait a few more days to see if their lofty ranking is deserved.  The Auburn Riverside Ravens are still No. 6 and can't wait to make up for last years' performance at State and move up in the final rankings.  Enumclaw had their final regular season game against Bellevue which didn't help their win/loss record but gives them valuable experience heading into State.  Roosevelt's wild card implosion allows Enumclaw to move up one spot to No. 7Puyallup also moves up one spot to No. 8.  Their late season surge secured a 2nd place finish in the West and the Vikings look ready to possibly make some noise at State. The Peninsula Seahawks were able to win a tiebreaker with Lakes to earn third place in the West division and avoid the wild card mayhem. Peninsula jumps back into the rankings at No. 9Emerald Ridge Jaguars must have had their Wheaties prior to the wild card because they looked like a team on a mission as they powered past Stadium, Roosevelt and Bainbridge to advance to State.  Welcome back to the rankings at No. 10, but your not aloneLakes lost the tiebreaker to Peninsula which placed them in the wild card. Once in the wild card, the Lancers ran the table with wins over Kentridge, Bainbridge, and Roosevelt. Lakes advances to State and shares the No. 10 ranking this week. For the Roosevelt Roughriders, OUCH!  Everything looked good until game your second game of the wild card and then it just seemed to evaporate.  Youth combined with playoff pressure often leads to heartbreak.  Still not sure what Roosevelt was doing in the wild card, but their inability to closeout games proved costly and there will be no memorable State tournaments moments for Roosevelt this year. An overtime victory over Roosevelt secured a spot at State, but no spot in the rankings this week.   Bainbridge, welcome to State.  No one really gave the Spartans a chance, but it doesn't matter what others believe as long as you believe in yourself.  It's been a tough season for Bainbridge but that is all behind them with a come from behind victory over Roosevelt.  Enjoy every minute of your State experience. Congratulations!

The path to winning is filled with obstacles and many of them are mental.  Water Polo may be physically challenging, but it's not overly complicated.  The team that consistently brings a high level of focus with execution of the fundamentals both offensively and defensively usually wins.  Throw in  a spectacular play or two, some clock management down the stretch, and well placed timeouts and a 2012 champion will be crowned.

Polo On!

(The Committee made an error on the original posting this week and erroneously stated that Emerald Ridge defeated Lakes in the wild card.  These teams did not play in the Wild Card.  Both teams were undefeated in the Wild Card Tournament and advance to State. The Committee's error left Lakes out of the original rankings which would not have been the case had the error not been made.   My sincere apologies to the Lakes Lancers.)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 10/28/2012

"Pay no attention to the man Committee behind the curtain!"

  1. Mercer Island
  2. Bellevue
  3. Auburn Mountainview
  4. Curtis
  5. Newport
  6. Auburn Riverside
  7. Roosevelt
  8. Enumclaw
  9. Puyallup
  10. Lakes 

Sometimes during a season, a team becomes so focused on an objective down the road that they simply do not appreciate the difficulty posed by obstacles immediately in front of them.  Without proper focus, those obstacles can become serious impediments to achieving a teams objective.  Thus was the situation in the third quarter of Mercer Island's game against Roosevelt when the Islanders fell behind by a score of 10 to 7.  Maybe the Islanders were looking ahead to their game with Bellevue or maybe the young Roughriders are really that good.  Most likely it is a little of both.  When it appeared the Islanders were on the brink of defeat, they reached deep within themselves and may have just found their heart and soul.  In sports, if you don't bring your focus to start a game, it rarely shows up in the second half, but the Islanders were able to regain their focus and up their intensity to pull off an improbable come from behind victory over Roosevelt by a score of 13 to 11.   With crisis averted, Mercer Island was able to turn their complete attention to Bellevue for a rematch to avenge their previous loss and regain the No. 1 ranking.  The Islander's focus and intensity were never in question in this game as the Islanders lit up the scoreboard first and maintained their lead throughout the game.  The Wolverines had their opportunities but were not quite able to match the Islanders effort throughout the game.  When it was all over, Mercer Island had a 10 - 6 victory and the No. 1 ranking in state.  For Bellevue, it's back to No. 2 for now.  Probably as good of time as any for the Wolverines to learn a valuable lesson as they prepare for State.  In A-Town it was the eagerly awaited rematch between Mountainview and Riverside.  This was the third meeting between these teams with Auburn Mountainview narrowly winning the the first two matches.  34 goals were put up the first time these teams met in the regular season but this time it was about defense.  Both teams appear to be in playoff form and for the third time this year, the Lions of Auburn Mountainview came out on top with a 8 - 7 victory over the Ravens.  Wow! Great game and a sign of great competition ahead at State.  Later in the week, the Lions completed their sweep of Auburn teams with a victory over the Auburn Trojans to clinch 1st place in the East division and retain their No. 3 position in the rankings.  All systems appear go for the Curtis Vikings heading into the playoffs as they complete their sweep of West division opponents.  The Vikings keep their No. 4 ranking displaying both offense and defense in wins over Mark Morris and Lakes.  Gee Newport, things seem to be quiet in your neck of the woods with Mercer Island and Bellevue getting all of the attention.  Rumor has it that the Knights will be in the wild card tourney.  Well, it doesn't matter how you get to State as long as you get there and the extra games will probably do you some good.  The Committee keeps taking heat, but Newport is still in the No. 5 spot.   Well Auburn Riverside, it was a great game against Mountainview and I know according to Raven logic a one point loss to the No. 3 team should make the Ravens No. 4, but it doesn't quite work that way. The Ravens remain at No . 6.  (Interesting one point victory over Stadium to end the week).  For Roosevelt, it could have been one of the greatest victories in Roughrider water polo history, but it was not to be.  Nevertheless, it was an impressive effort against Mercer Island and good enough to keep your No. 7 ranking.  The Enumclaw Hornets solidified their No. 8 ranking with victories over Auburn and Kentwood to wrap up play against East division opponents.  A November 1st match against Bellevue will provide an interesting preview to the playoffs.  The Puyallup Vikings hosted the Peninsula Seahawks and clinched a spot in the State tournament with a 12 - 8 victory  to remain at No. 9 this week.  The Lakes Lancers struggled in their loss to Curtis but were able to barely hold on  the No. 10 spot with an overtime victory over Emerald Ridge. That leaves Peninsula and Stadium out on the porch for now.  Both teams have a good shot at qualifying for State through the wild card route. (Update: Lakes and Peninsula are tied for third place in the West division and will play a winner to state game with the loser going to the wild card)

Polo On!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 10/21/2012

  1. Bellevue
  2. Mercer Island
  3. Auburn Mountainview
  4. Curtis
  5. Newport
  6. Auburn Riverside
  7. Roosevelt
  8. Enumclaw
  9. Puyallup
  10. Lakes

The Bellevue Wolverines took their show on the road last week with games against Roosevelt and Lakes.  Early in the season, the Wolverines dispatched Roosevelt with relative ease, but last week the Roughriders were determined to make a game of it.  Bellevue used a strong second quarter to build a four goal lead at the half.  Roosevelt was able to cut the lead down to two goals for a short while, but in the end Bellevue won 14 to 10.  Later in the week, Bellevue used a stout defense to shut down the Lakes attack cruising to a 14 -2-victory and keeping their hold on the No. 1 spot.  Mercer Island retains the No. 2 position with a solid 9-6 victory over Newport and a 19 to 8 win over Bainbridge in the battle of the island teams.  The victory over Newport sets the stage for this weeks' rematch of the top two teams when Bellevue heads over to the country club to take on the Islanders. A few words of caution to the Islanders before the big game: Don't overlook Roosevelt!
Auburn Mountainview is enjoying the rarefied air at No. 3 and had strong offensive showings against Stadium and Kentridge to keep their position.  Hard to move up from here, but it is easy to fall.  Oh look what's on the schedule this week, another match with the friendly Ravens of Auburn Riverside.  This match promises to be a nail biter until the end.  No pressure though, its just for city bragging rights for a few weeks until the State Tournament.  The Curtis Vikings continued to mow down league rivals with impressive performances against Wilson and Rogers.  In previous years, these would be close games but not this year.  Curtis remains at No. 4 and will roll into the playoffs as one of the top seeds.  Newport is back at full strength and was poised for an upset of the Islanders, but it was not to be last week.  Hey, a 3 point loss to Mercer Island would be a moral victory for most teams, and this week it's good enough to hold on to the No. 5 spot.  Yes Raven fans, that means your team is still at No. 6Auburn Riverside knocked off Enumclaw by a score of 14 - 12 for their second regular season win over the Hornets.  No. 6 doesn't seem fair to some fans, but a win this week over Auburn Mountainview in the battle of Auburn would move the Ravens up at least one spot, maybe two.  Roosevelt continues to show improvement and their performance against Bellevue strengthens their hold on the No. 7 ranking.  The Roughriders appear to be the team making the most improvement and Mercer Island will have a game on their hands Monday night.  Win or lose, Roosevelt is on the rise and will pose some interesting match ups come playoff time.  Enumclaw easily took care of business last week against Kentridge before falling to Auburn Riverside.  A win and a close loss to a higher ranked team all helps as the Hornets move up one spot to No. 8.  Last week, the Committee placed Puyallup on the front porch step, stating that it would take a win over a ranked team to get in.  Well, all I can say is congratulations and welcome back to the No. 9 ranking.  Not only did Puyallup knock off  previously No. 8 Lakes in overtime, but also defeated previously No. 10 Peninsula.  The Committee apologizes for ever having any doubts.   The Lakes Lancers had a tough week. Overtime losses are never easy, but then falling flat against the Bellevue was no picnic.  Lakes drops two spots to No. 10.  Sorry Peninsula,  that puts you out on the porch for now.

Polo On!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 10/14/2012

  1. Bellevue
  2. Mercer Island
  3. Auburn Mountainview
  4. Curtis
  5. Newport
  6. Auburn Riverside
  7. Roosevelt
  8. Lakes
  9. Enumclaw
  10. Peninsula

Last week, the Bellevue Wolverines rose to the top of the rankings just in time for another prime time match against Newport.  In their first regular season game, Bellevue had a pretty easy time against a short handed Newport team. This time the Knights had all hands on deck, all ships in the water, and all Speedos wet!  Down by two going into the 4th quarter, Newport rallied to put the game into overtime, but Bellevue had just a little more left in the tank to survive in a thrilling 12 -10 victory to retain the No. 1 ranking for another week.  A warning for upcoming opponents of Newport: Be afraid, be very afraid.  Mercer Island had a relatively easy time defeating Inglemoor last week which is good enough to hold on to the No. 2 position.  The Islanders are getting ready for  a series of tough matches and it all starts this week against Newport.  The Lions of Auburn Mountainview had an interesting weekend at the Lake/Curtis Tournament.  It started by squeaking out a 1-point victory over Roosevelt and ended with a victory over Curtis to win the tournament.  In between those games were a win over Peninsula, a loss to Curtis, and another squeaker over Auburn Riverside.  A tournament championship and a regular season win over Enumclaw all adds up to the No. 3 ranking!  Wow, I remember when these Lions were just cubs!  For the Curtis Vikings, that means a small drop to No. 4.  Everything seemed to be going their way until the final game.  Yes, the Vikings earlier win in bracket play over Auburn Mountainview was impressive, and the regular season wins this week over Peninsula and Emerald Ridge were also notable, but this is the second loss to the Lions this year in tournament play.  There's still time to smooth out the kinks and remind your offensive guns to put their shots between the posts.  Okay Newport,  you guys make this job difficult at times.  The Committee knows that you're better than your record, and Bellevue certainly knows you're a top contender, so welcome back to the rankings at No. 5.  Yes, we know you think it's too low, but while you guys have been short handed, everyone else has been getting stronger.  Defeat Mercer Island and the Committee will reconsider next week.  The Auburn Riverside Ravens had a pretty good tournament.  Heck, the Ravens only lost by 1-point to Auburn Mountainview, but with the return of Newport, the Ravens drop one position to No. 6.  I know, it doesn't seem fair, but in the whole scheme of life dropping 1 spot is trivial.  Two weeks ago,  the Committee was putting the finishing touches on Roosevelt's 2012 eulogy.  The playoffs appeared unlikely to everyone but the Roughriders who have charged back into contention.  Roosevelt served notice this weekend that they are not to be taken lightly by anyone.  Is it just me, or do these 2012 Roughriders look younger than most JV teams. Roosevelt will make it difficult for playoff opponents this year and this week they make their first appearance in the rankings at No. 7Lakes had a little difficulty with Curtis and Auburn Riverside over the weekend but a victory over Enumclaw propelled the Lancers to a 4th place finish and this weeks No. 8 ranking.  The Lancers have the ability to score on most opponents but need to tighten up their defense a wee bit if they want to move up further in the rankings.   Enumclaw didn't have the best of tournaments, and losses to Roosevelt and Lakes took a toll on the Hornets ranking as they drop to No. 9.  Still time for the Hornets to keep improving before playoffs.  The Peninsula Seahawks had their hands full as they dropped games to Curtis, Auburn Mountainview, Roosevelt and Enumclaw.  Hey,  what doesn't kill ya, makes you stronger and this week it is good enough to remain in the rankings at No. 10.   Apologies to Puyallup. The Vikings keep winning, but with the emergence of Newport and Roosevelt, it's going to take a win over a ranked opponent to get back in the rankings for now.  Emerald Ridge: Ditto.

Polo On!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Lakes / Curtis Tournament Scores

Friday 10/12

Game 1:     Auburn Riverside 21     Lakes 9
Game 2:     Enumclaw 17     Bainbridge 5
Game 3:     Curtis 14     Peninsula 9
Game 4:     Auburn Mountainview 8     Roosevelt 7
Game 5:     Lakes 18     Bainbridge 11
Game 6:     Curtis 11     Roosevelt 5
Game 7:     Auburn Riverside 11     Enumclaw 7
Game 8:     Auburn Mountainview 13     Peninsula 6 

Saturday 10/13

Game 9:      Lakes 13     Enumclaw 8
Game 10:    Roosevelt 11     Peninsula 4  
Game 11:    Auburn Riverside 18     Bainbridge 5
Game 12:    Curtis 11     Auburn Mountainview 4
Game 13:    Enumclaw 13     Peninsula 9
Game 14:    Roosevelt 14     Bainbridge 3
Game 15:    Auburn Mountainview 8     Auburn Riverside 7
Game 16:    Curtis 19     Lakes 2
Game 17:    Peninsula 19     Bainbridge 6  (7th & 8th Place)
Game 18;    Roosevelt 7     Enumclaw 6  (5th & 6th)
Game 19:    Auburn Riverside 8     Lakes 5 (3rd & 4th)
Game 20:    Auburn Mountainview 10     Curtis 5 (1st & 2nd)

Congratulations to the Lions of Auburn Mountainview for winning the Curtis/Lakes Tournament

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 10/7/2012

  1. Bellevue
  2. Mercer Island
  3. Curtis
  4. Auburn Mountainview
  5. Auburn Riverside
  6. Enumclaw
  7. Peninsula
  8. Puyallup
  9. Lakes
  10. Emerald Ridge

Last week started of with a prime time showdown between the two top ranked teams.  When the white caps in the King County Aquatic Center pool had calmed down, it was the defending state champions who were victorious over Mercer Island.  The game was tied at the half, but Bellevue was able to tighten up an already stingy defense and hold the Islanders to only one goal in the second half, earning a hard fought 8 to 5 victory.  With the win, Bellevue rises to the No. 1 ranking.  Never underestimate the heart of a champion!.  For Mercer Island, it's their first loss to in-state competition and the battle with Bellevue shows that they are very much a legitimate contender for the state title.  For now, these youngsters will have to settle for the No. 2 spot.  Plenty of time for the Islanders to improve before their regular season rematch with Bellevue.  Curtis holds on to the No. 3 position with solid performances in wins over Lakes and Puyallup.  The Vikings will have a say in who wins at State.  For now, their schedule makes it difficult to move up.  Maybe next weekends' Curtis Tournament can shake the rankings up a little.  Auburn Mountainview took care of business with wins over Auburn and Kentwood.  Not too much of a test, but good enough to remain at No. 4.  The Ravens of Auburn Riverside tallied 25 goals in a win over Stadium which is impressive but they might want to tighten up their defense as the competition will only get better as the season progresses. For now, the Ravens hold at No. 5.  At No. 6, the Enumclaw Hornets continue to rack up wins this season.  Last week the Hornets downed Kentwood and Wilson.  Playoffs are a certainty, only the seedings need to be determined.  It took the Peninsula Seahawks double overtime to defeat Emerald Ridge last Thursday evening. Peninsula's hold on the No . 7 spot might be shaky, but the Committee can't penalize the Seahawks for a win, so enjoy your No. 7 ranking.  Puyallup started the week with an overtime win over Emerald Ridge.  In the battle of the Vikings,  Puyallup fell to Curtis 16 - 10.   Heck, a win and a respectable showing is good enough to remain at No. 8Lakes dropped a 12 -5 decision to Curtis to start the week and the Committee could not track down any other scores.  No embarrassment in losing to Curtis and the Lancers keep their hold on the No. 9 spot this week.  Last week, the Committee ranked Newport at No. 10 knowing that they have some serious talent.  However, not all the talent was in the pool as the Newport Knights fell to the Roosevelt Roughriders.  Newport has more important things to worry about than the rankings, and this week they find themselves on the outside.   The Committee will keep an eye on the Knights.  A win over league rivals Bellevue or Mercer Island might just jump the Knights back in the rankings.  So who is the new No. 10??  For shear entertainment and excitement, the Committee welcomes the Emerald Ridge Jaguars to the No. 10 spot.  Overtime losses to Peninsula and Puyallup show that the Jaguars are a top 10 caliber team and we didn't even know that Jaguars could swim.  Emerald Ridge appears to be this years' cardiac kids, so take precaution and please check with your physician before attending their games.

Other Notes:

The Committee might have been a little too quick to suggest that Roosevelt wouldn't be making any memorable playoff moments in 2012.  The Roughriders have been on a win streak and have at least secured a shot at State through the Wild Card Tourney.  Heck, with Newport struggling,  Roosevelt might even capture the third spot in the north and punch their ticket directly to the State Tournament, which would put Newport in the wild card position.  Wow! Just think, a legitimate state contender in the wild card tourney.

The Wilson Rams have also been on a bit of a win streak until their recent loss to Enumclaw.   The wild card route to State is indeed a possibility.

Stadium tallied another victory with a win over Auburn

Mark Morris outlasted Rogers for a 1 point victory in a wild 18-17 decision.

Hoosier Water Polo Wisdom

Coach Norman Dale: "If you put your effort and concentration into playing to your potential, to be the best that you can be, I don't care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we're gonna be winners."

From the movie:  Hoosiers

Polo On!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Announcement: The Coronation of the 2012 State Champion will be postponed until the last day of the State Tournament, but updated rankings will be posted this weekend!!

Polo On!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Boys High School Rankings for Week of 9/25/2012

  1. Mercer Island
  2. Bellevue
  3. Curtis
  4. Auburn Mountainview
  5. Auburn Riverside
  6. Enumclaw
  7. Peninsula
  8. Puyallup
  9. Lakes
  10. Newport

THE WAIT IS OVER!!!  The initial ranking for the Washington State Boys High School Water Polo season is here. 
Seldom in the course of human events does a team fall into the abyss of oblivion one year and then rise to the top of the rankings the following year.  Hey, it's not world peace, but it is significant if you're an Islander fan.  For the Islanders of Mercer Island it's been a long 22+ months since they were last on top in the rankings, but now they're back and claim the initial No. 1 Ranking for the 2012 season.  We're not saying the current group is ready to join the Mercer Island Water Polo Hall of Fame, but they are legitimate contenders for the 2012 state title.  The Islanders are off to a fast start with league wins over Roosevelt, Bainbridge, and Newport and a tourney win over Curtis.  Of course, the top spot does put a target on your back and the defending state champs will be taking aim next week in what will be the match up of the year so far.  Yes, the defending champion Bellevue comes in at No. 2.  One might think that after graduating the majority of their scoring from last season that the Wolverines might be in for a rebuilding year, but great programs find a way to reload.  An undefeated start to the season has Bellevue on a collision course with Mercer Island to determine north division dominance and the numero uno ranking.  The Curtis Vikings start the year at No. 3.   A perennial powerhouse,  the Curtis program continually recruits and develops strong players and will again be in serious contention for a state title.  A quick start in regular season play notched notable wins over Enumclaw and Auburn Riverside, but last weekend's tourney in Oregon proved to be difficult as they dropped some games to Mercer Island and Auburn Mountainview.  The Oregon Tournament can take a toll, but it will only make the Vikings stronger when it counts come playoff time.  At No. 4Auburn Mountainview is just coming off a big regular season overtime win over Auburn Riverside.  The Lions were the darlings of the 2011 State tournament finishing in a surprising  fourth place.  With a tourney win over Curtis and the win over Auburn Riverside, the Lions won't be catching anyone by surprise this year and the Committee can overlook an early season loss to Enumclaw.  The Ravens of Auburn Riverside have some unfinished business from last year after a disappointing performance in the state playoffs. The Ravens misfired against Curtis early in the season, but appear to be finding their groove as the season progresses and find themselves ranked No. 5.  A league win over Enumclaw makes up for a double overtime loss to the Hornets in the Auburn Tournament final.  As a more experienced team this year,  the Ravens should be able make some noise at the state tournament.  The Hornets of Enumclaw won last weekend's Auburn Tournament with the aforementioned double overtime victory over Auburn Riverside.  With the exception of an opening season loss to Curtis, the Hornets had been on a roll until Wednesday night when Auburn Riverside got a little revenge.  However, these things happen and the tournament win and a regular season victory over Auburn Mountainview is good enough to secure the No. 6 spot.  Now for a very important announcement: For the first time in this blog's history, the Committee is proud to announce that the Peninsula Seahawks have made the rankings and this week have earned the No. 7 position.  Gig Harbor will be going crazy.  Congratulations!!  All it takes is some wins and the Seahawks have delivered with regular season wins over Emerald Ridge, Rogers, Mark Morris, and Lakes.  The Committee will admit that Puyallup has a legitimate argument to be No.7, but their loss to an improving Mark Morris team was a bit of a surprise.  For now, Puyallup comes in at the 8th spot.  This is just the first week for the rankings and there is plenty of time to move up (or down).  At No. 9, the Lakes Lancers are showing improvement over last year and might have what it takes to move up in the rankings as the season progresses.  A close double OT loss to Peninsula last night shows that the Lancers are playoff capable and might be a team to keep an eye on.  At No. 10, The Newport Knights were considered by most to be the preseason favorite for the 2012 title.  Losses are starting to mount and rumor has it that some of the Newport fleet is in drydock.  Not sure what's up, but I do know that an important trait of a championship team is senior leadership.  In water polo,  a leader's speedo is wet.  Figure it out, get your caps on and get back in the pool!    Apologies to Emerald Ridge.  The Committee gave Newport the benefit of the doubt this week, so you are on the outside looking in for now.

Where are they now department

Apparently it is not the "Year of the Ram".  Both Wilson and Rogers appear to be in rebuilding mode.  These programs have a great history and they might still have a chance to make the playoffs if they can produce some wins in October, but it won't be easy.

The Roosevelt Roughriders look like they're in for a rough year.  Over the past five seasons, Roosevelt had some very talented players that produced some memorable playoff moments.  This young team will still have memorable moments, but they're unlikely to be state playoff moments.

Bainbridge is another team that looks to be in rebuilding mode.  Bainbridge deserved to be in the state playoffs last year but missed out in the tough north division.  State rankings and the playoffs will be difficult to achieve this rebuilding year.

Shout out for effort!!

Mark Morris and Stadium haven't received much recognition in the blog (yet) but they are improving and both teams have recorded wins this year.  Most notable were  the Mark Morris' victory over No. 8 Puyallup and Stadium's victory over Wilson.  They're putting up more points and the Committee is keeping an eye on their progress.

Submitted Photos:

Christopher Apodoca of Mercer Island

 Polo On!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Initial Rankings will be posted sometime on Thursday 9/27.  Sorry for the delay.  Keep forwarding results. Each outcome adds a little clarity to the rankings.

Polo On!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

It's so close, I can almost feel it!!

Thanks for all the updates that have been sent in this last week and keep them coming.    The initial rankings are being tabulated on the Committee's Commodore 64 and will be posted mid week.   Do you want to see pictures??  Send in your best pics from the 2012 season and we'll try to post some on a weekly basis.

Polo On!

The Committee

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

2012 RANKINGS are almost here!!

Hope to post the inital 2012 Water Polo rankings next week.  Please help the committee by emailing any and all scores to  It would be great to have a representative fan from each team sending in scores on a regular basis.


The Committee

Polo On!