Barlow boys win battle atop Mount Hood
6A BOYS WATER POLO
Mount Hood Conference
The Barlow boys took the inside track toward the Mount Hood Conference water polo championship with a 13-10 win over Grant on Tuesday night.
The Bruins took command of the game with a three-goal burst midway through the second half. It started with a quick restart out of the defensive end that saw goalie Andy Nelson fire a long ball over the top for C.J. Brushwood, who slipped past the defense in the deep end leaving him with a one-on-one chance against the keeper.
"Leaving just a tad bit early gave me a big advantage getting out in front of them," Brushwood said.
Moments later, Leo Erickson came up with a steal near the side of the pool and floated a high pass over the top of a defender to find Johnny Dewey for a lob shot inside the far post.
"We came out in that third period and gave it our all, using our speed to our advantage," Erickson said. "Defensively, we forced some bad passes and came up with some steals that led to some great offensive possessions for us.
Dewey worked his way in close and struck again to boost Barlow's lead to 12-8 early in the fourth period.
It would not be close the rest of the way.
The win pushes the Bruins to 8-1 in the 6A league standings and avenges a recent tournament loss to the Generals.
"This is a really big win, because there's a round-robin of teams all right there together, so seeding for the playoffs is going to be tight," Brushwood said.
Grant scored on its first possession of the game, and that would prove to be its only lead of the night. Jackson Knifong fired a shot top shelf to put the Bruins in front, and Barlow would got 2-for-3 on penalty shots to go up 5-3 at the end of the first period.
Brushwood led the Bruins with eight goals.
In the earlier girls game, first-place Barlow raced to a 17-2 victory with eight players scoring. Amaya Leiby led the way with four goals.
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This story is slated for our Friday, Nov. 1, print edition.
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