Bruins return to title game, settle for second
NOTE: A photo caption for this story was amended to properly identify Barlow High goalie Emma Strobel.
6A GIRLS WATER POLO
CORVALLIS — The Barlow High girls water polo team punched its ticket into the 6A state finals for the second straight season, but this time the defending champs had to settle for the runner-up trophy after a 10-3 loss to top-seeded Newberg on Saturday.
"The time and effort that players give and the amount of swimming put in — it's hard to get to the very top, the pinnacle, to the championship game and to fall short and have the season end in a loss," Barlow coach Mike Riegelmann said.
The Tigers reached the pinnacle thanks in large part to their defense, which held teams to low point totals all season. It was no different in a state championship match where Newberg gave up just a trio of goals.
Newberg and Barlow got off to relatively slow start offensively, feeling each other out for the first seven minutes. Amaya Leiby scored in each of the first two periods to keep the score deadlocked 2-2 in the early stages.
Newberg rattled off four goals in a row – two coming from Hailey Day – and took command of the game with a 6-2 lead at half.
"The ball just didn't fall our way — the shots were just off. We'd get the shot we'd want, but it would hit the bar. If some of those go in, we build our lead and turn the momentum," Riegelmann said. "We got our stops, but just could not convert on the offensive end."
Allyson Corbett scored late in the third period to bring the Bruins within 7-3, but that proved to be their final goal of the game, as the Tigers swarmed to the ball when necessary.
Barlow scored a 9-4 win over South Eugene in Friday's semifinal game, breaking the game open with a four-goal spurt in the third period. Amaya Leiby led the Bruins with a hat trick, while Savannah Darling and Allyson Corbett netted two goals apiece.
The Bruins knocked off league foe David Douglas 10-9 in overtime during last week's quarterfinals, getting the winning goal from Olivia Schubert. Barlow goalie Emma Strobel made three blocks in the extra session.
Leiby led the Bruins with three goals, all coming in the first period.
This story is slated for our Tuesday, Nov. 19, print edition.
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