Gunn water polo teams move closer to defending their titles


While Gunn is celebrating its 50th year anniversary this school year, the Titans' water polo program may have something special to celebrate, as well.

The Gunn boys and girls began this season having never won back-to-back titles together. That could happen, however, with both teams holding two-game leads in SCVAL De Anza Division action with only three to play.

At stake is a No. 1 seeding and first-round bye for the league playoffs.

The girls opened up their two-game lead following a 5-2 victory over visiting Los Gatos on Tuesday night. The Titans (9-0, 14-3) handed the Wildcats only their second loss in league play.

Senior Nia Gardner scored three times and freshman Zoe Banks added two. Senior goalie Sam Acker came up with 14 saves for Gunn, which can clinch no worse than a tie for the regular-season title by beating host Saratoga on Thursday.

The Gunn boys, meanwhile, got six goals from Ari Wayne and moved closer to wrapping up their second straight undefeated league season with a 15-6 dunking of host Monta Vista on Tuesday in Cupertino.

The Titans (9-0, 11-5) grabbed an 8-2 halftime lead and cruised behind two goals each from Christian Znidarsic, Calder Hilde-Jones and Aaron Babian.

Gunn can clinch no worse than a tie for the league title by beating host Saratoga on Thursday.

The Palo Alto boys, meanwhile, kept their slim title hopes alive and moved into a second-place tie by knocking off visiting Mountain View, 8-5, on Tuesday.

With junior Winston Rosati tossing in five goals and senior Lucas Novak tallying twice, the Vikings (8-2, 9-10) tied the Spartans (7-2, 12-8) for the second spot with two matches remaining, the final one against Gunn.

The Palo Alto girls got back on the winning track by getting four goals from junior Gigi Rojahn in a 7-4 triumph over visiting Mountain View.

Captain Oliva Scola threw in two goals and junior Katie Francis added one on a speedy breakaway as the Vikings moved to 6-4 in league play.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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Like this comment
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 22, 2014 at 2:44 pm

I don't know the exact or correct wording here - but the league championship is awarded after the SCVAL Tournament has been played out. The round-robin portion of the season is a big step, but not the final step.

Both Gunn squads are in position to win the round-robin portion of the season, but that is not the final championship. And, oddly enough, a team that wins the round-robin portion of the season can plausibly lose the tournament championship match and still come out as the league champion overall...or lose the championship.

Obviously the round-robin finish determines each team's seeding for the SCVAL Tournament. The first place team (most likely Gunn) will enjoy the luxury of a first-round bye in the tournament.

The SCVAL uses a point system...points are awarded for finish in the round-robin and then the tournament finish. Round-robin finish receives a slightly higher value since it involves playing each team twice.

After the tournament, final placing is determined based upon the points won. In the De Anza Division, the top four teams will receive automatic bids for the CIF-CCS championship. Occasionally a fifth team has been selected for one of the at-large berths.

Good luck to the Titans.

Like this comment
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 22, 2014 at 3:02 pm

And just in case you're wondering...

Tournament process:
Day 1
Game #1 (4th seed v. 5th seed)
Game #2 (3rd seed v. 6th seed)
Game #3 (2nd seed v. 7th seed)

Day 2
Game #4 Consolation bracket
Game #5 (W Gm1 v. W Gm2) Semi
Game #6 (W Gm3 v. 1st seed) Semi
Game #7 Consolation bracket

Day 3
Game #8 Consolation bracket
Game #9 (L Gm5 v. L Gm6) Third place
Game #10 (W Gm5 v. W Gm6) First Place

Like this comment
Posted by Gunn wopo sibling
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Oct 22, 2014 at 5:30 pm

Congratulations to all four Titan water polo teams for their wins! A call out to the boys varsity defense, especially Jack Mallery, Justin Cooper and goaltender, Anthony Zunino. Lost track of the number of saves!

Like this comment
Posted by marianne
a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 22, 2014 at 9:51 pm

two thoughts-- why does palo alto high school only report their wins. if they want to report scores fairly so that everyone in the community can follow them, they should report all scores--wins and losses. this trend started with their old Athletic Director --hansen. it now seems to be continuing. either report all scores or no scores. why does the paper allow them to do so?

second thought "return to transparency" above ad-- where have we all heard that line before--and what has it gotten us? there is NO transparency in government. i doubt the person above is any different regarding transparency than anyone else currently in government. how does she propose to do so.

Like this comment
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 23, 2014 at 2:13 pm

@ marianne: not true. When our kids played at Paly (Hansen was AD), all scores were reported to all local newspapers and MaxPreps. Frankly it comes down to parent volunteers to do the work. The AD (at either school) doesn't do score reporting. So it either falls on the coach or one of the parent volunteers.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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