State

MMC water polo powers continue their dominance

The Johansen girls and Oakdale boys water polo teams did exactly what they've done all season in Thursday's Modesto Metro Conference doubleheader at Johansen High School.

Each scored early and often and made sure the outcome was never in doubt.

Both MMC leaders remained undefeated thanks to dominating performances that saw the Viking girls roll to a 19-3 victory and the Mustang boys cruise to a 22-3 triumph.

"Today went about how I expected it would," said Johansen coach Brent Bohlender, whose girls team will be back in action today for the Johansen-hosted Western States Championships.

"The girls are playing well and they're ready for the tournament. We're hoping to make it into the top eight and possibly make it into the top four.

"These games will be against the toughest teams we'll have had to face, and we're looking forward to it."

In Thursday's opener, Johansen's girls improved to 10-0 in the MMC and 21-1 overall with a convincing victory that featured seven goals by Gabi Mantellato and four apiece from Brooke Fuller and Hillary Niel.

"We passed the ball well and played really good defense today," said Bohlender. "When they adjusted their defense to try and stop Gabi, we were able to adjust and work the ball in to Brooke and Hillary, who were able to get off good shots, and we were able to score from the back with Taylor (Hanson), as well.

"If it's not one girl it's been another all year."

Hanson and Kaysie Lewis had two goals each for Johansen. Vikings goalie Brooke McGee had eight saves.

Savannah Stender scored two goals and Rachel Farley one for second-place Oakdale, which lost for just the second time in 10 MMC games.

In the nightcap, Oakdale's boys ran their record to 10-0 in MMC play, 16-1 overall, with an equally dominating performance that was highlighted by a six-goal effort by Robby Earle.

"Robby probably had the best game he's played this season," said Oakdale coach Alan Stender.

Stender also sang the praises of all-Stanislaus District goaltender Garrett Porter, who recorded 14 saves for the Mustangs.

"Any time you hold a team to three goals, you're going to win," Stender said. "Garrett is 6-foot-7 and he's a pretty big presence back there.

"Good goalies will have six or eight saves, which tells you the kind of performance Garrett had."

Jeremy Neathery and Chris Terwilliger scored five goals apiece and Tyler Lee added four for the Mustangs, who led 8-0 after one period.

Kyle Sessa scored two goals to lead Johansen. Carlo Brodrick also found the net for the second-place Vikings, who fell to 8-2 in the MMC.

Stender was particularly pleased with his team's balanced offense.

"What I like most is seeing seven different players score," said Stender. "It's always nice to see that kind of balanced scoring."

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