Cerritos water polo has hot start to season

Max Perez

The men’s water polo team started its extensive first week of play with seven wins and only one loss.

The season began with a cross country trip to Maryland where the team participated in the Naval Academy Tournament.

On the first day of competition the team came out and won all three of its games against Salem International University, (20-13), Navy “B” team, (19-18) in overtime and Penn St-Behrend College, (23-7).

The team’s depth showed as scoring was coming from a multitude of players, and both freshman goalies Matthew Contreras and Jason Curiel were able to play very well.

In the second day of competition the Falcons came away with one win and one loss.

Coach Joe Abing said, “The travel definitely caught up to us on Sunday.”

The team won its first game against Mckendree University (IL) (14-11), but lost its second and final game against Gannon University (PA) (11-10).

The last day of competition was not as easy for the Falcons.

Prior to the second day of competition one of the team’s van was broken into while sight seeing in Washington D.C. and half of the team’s equipment was stolen.

This proved to be a tough blow to the team and was a possible reason for their lackluster play on the second day.

Driver Anthony Govoni stated, “We thought we weren’t going to play our last game, so everyone got kind of lazy.”

Coach Abing went on to say, ”We were mentally pretty beat up, in addition to being physically tired. By the end of the trip we were pretty beat up.”

“It was a really good bonding experience,” Abing stated while later adding, “[It was] definitely a success.”

Driver Jeffrey Park agreed with coach saying, “We meshed pretty well during the tournament.”

After returning home from D.C. the team played its first conference game of the season against Rio Hondo where the team won in a convincing fashion beating them 17-4.

Against Rio Hondo, the team was able to again show their depth with nine different players scoring and both goalies Contreras and Curiel combining for seven saves.

Abing was pleased with the game and added “Lots of depth […] so I’m able to rotate a lot of guys that we’re able to wear other teams down.”

Cerritos continued its hot start with games against Citrus and Palomar as a part of the Golden West Tournament.

The Falcons were able to pull out two wins beating Citrus, 22-10 and Palomar, 17-11.

The team was lead by Angel Rojas and Ever Resendiz, who both scored 12 goals in the tournament according to the Cerritos Falcons website.

However, coach would like the team to limit turnovers, and to simply “keep getting better.”

Park believes in “defense first,” and that communication is key as well as making the most of the opponents mistakes.

Govoni simply thinks the team needs to not take games lightly.

After an impressive first week of playing from all players, Angel Rojas who according to Abing is, “One of the best players in the state.”

Rojas currently is currently leading the team in goals(46), assists(20) and steals(24).

If Rojas continues his level of play throughout the season he has a chance have more than 100 goals, assists and steals in one season, an accomplishment he was one assist away from completing last year.

Coach Abing believes that the way this season is going to be for Rojas he will have a good chance to meet the mark.

“Teams are going to be double teaming him a lot, so I would anticipate he’s going to have a high number of assists.”

Ever Resendiz, who coach described as “a really strong defender,” is second on the team with 20 goals.

The team is off to a great start but coach thinks for this team to stay at this level it will need to stay focused.

“We need to be careful we don’t get over confident,” Abing stated, “We just need to keep practicing hard.”