Neuqua Valley hosting the Boys Water Polo Sectional Finals where the host Wildcats face off against the defending state champions Naperville Central Redhawks.
It’s a rough game right off the batt. 2 and a half minutes into the game, Neuqua’s Jack Hiss throws one with the backhand in to open up scoring. 1-0 cats
A few minutes later and Central gets on the board thanks to a bouncer courtesy of Cam Dougherty, game all tied up at 1.
Second quarter and Central up by 1. Make that two after Bender Russo waits just a few seconds before firing away up close, 3-1 with just under 6 to play until the break.
Neuqua’s Pierce Salafatino keeping the game close with 5 and a half left in the second. He gets up and sends a missle to the back of the goal. Cats trailing by 1.
Seconds ticking down in the 2nd quarter. Bender Russo sends one across to Brad Sandford who fires. At halftime, the Redhawks lead 4-3.
Coming out of the break and Neuqua looking to take control. They knot the game up thanks to Matt Townsend off an assist from Benjamin Monson.
But I told you about how Central is the defending state champs, right? Luke Klein Collins to Cam Doughtery who just pushes it towards the goal. Central leading once more 6-4.
Bender Russo Keeps the Redhawks rolling with a minute left in the third. He picks up the loose ball and shoots. Central now up 8-4 over the wildcats.
In to the final stanza and Neuqua not giving up just yet. Matt Townsend doesn’t even appear to be able to see the goal but he finds it anyway, Neuqua down 9-5.
5 minutes left to play, Neuqua’s Pierce Salafatino sees Jack Hiss on the other side of the pool, he tosses it to him and Hiss gets the goal to go, cats trialing by just 3 now.
But those pesky state champions… well they want to go back to state. Cam They are quick with their passing and Doughtery gets another goal to go as Naperville Central moves on to the state quarter finals against Stevenson.
Check out how the girls water polo teams faired in their sectional in our Girls Sports Highlights!