There was very little that could stop the Lakeridge girls water polo team this year.
Indeed, you could accurately summarize "very little" this way — Newberg and Summit.
Class 6A state champion Newberg and third-place finisher Summit saddled Lakeridge with six of its seven losses this year, but with both the Tigers and Storm out of the way last weekend, the Pacers capped their 2019 season with two straight wins and a fifth-place finish at state.
Lakeridge, which finished second to Newberg in the Three Rivers League race, routed Reynolds 15-3 in its fifth-place semifinal on Friday, Nov. 15, then edged David Douglas 5-3 on Saturday, Nov. 16, to wrap up fifth pace. Both games were held at Osborn Aquatic Center in Corvallis.
In addition to their fifth-place trophy, the Pacers saw junior Molly Glad, sophomore Cascade Stensland and freshman goalie Evelyn Miller all named to the Class 6A all-tournament honorable mention team.
With the wins, Lakeridge finished its 2019 season with a 19-7 overall record.
Lakeridge 15, Reynolds 3: The fifth-ranked Pacers made their presence known right away on Friday, blasting out to a 10-1 first-quarter lead and hammering No. 8 Reynolds 15-3 on Friday.
In that watershed first period, Lakeridge saw Stensland pour in three of her four goals while teammates Hayden Borelli, Bella Wright and Glad added two each.
The Pacers eased off the accelerator after that, but never let the Raiders get closer than 10 goals in the game's final three quarters. After Stensland's game-high four goals, Glad added three for Lakeridge. Summer Fulton scored all three of Reynolds' goals.
Lakeridge 5, David Douglas 3: The Pacer tournament finale, however, was a different story. Facing No. 7 David Douglas, Lakeridge was tied 3-3 with the Scots three minutes into the third quarter and didn't secure its win — and fifth-place finish — until well into the fourth.
The Pacers led 1-0 in the first quarter on a Charlotte Mitchell goal and a shutout performance by Miller and the Lakeridge "D." In the second quarter, the two teams traded scores, with Anna Bagaric connecting for the Scots while Glad answered late in the half to keep the Pacers ahead 2-1.
But David Douglas got back-to-back scores by Ivy Downs and Sierra Bui in a span of just 18 seconds in the third quarter to take a 3-2 lead — the Scots' only lead of the game — before Lakeridge's Riley Wilson answered almost immediately to send the game into the fourth knotted at 3-3.
There, with fifth place hanging in the balance, Glad came through with the game-winning goal with 3:59 left in the contest and Stensland followed with an insurance score with 1:12 to go for the final 5-3 margin.
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