Naperville North boys water polo defeats Neuqua and advances to third straight IHSA Sectional Final

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Naperville North boys water polo takes on Neuqua Valley in an IHSA Sectional Semifinal.  These two teams met earlier in the season, and the Huskies won 19-8 over the Wildcats on March 12. This highlight is sponsored by BMO.

The action gets going from the start. Caleb Uson makes a big save with the Wildcats on the attack, keeping the game knotted at zero.

Mason Hofmann and Brett Grady get the Huskies cooking early on

Mason Hofmann is the first Huskies player to score a goal. Jack Boudeman’s assist makes it 1-0.

On the attack again, Geno Valente answers the Husky goal with his first and ties the game at 1-1, putting it in for the Wildcats.

The captain, Brett Grady, sets up an opportunity for Jacob Podkasik, who has an open left side of the net and easily scores, making it 2-1.

Off to a hot offensive start, the Huskies keep adding on. Hofmann finds the back of the net for his second goal of the game.

Grady, getting active defensively, steals the ball from the Wildcats, which sets up Caden Tsao who gets his first goal of the game, and it is now 5-1 with three minutes left in the first quarter.

Looking for his third goal, Hofmann is denied by Ansh Vasudevon, coming up with a save keeping the score at 5-1.

Neuqua Valley keeps the game close with solid defense turning into offense

Following the momentum from his save, Neuqua Valley turns to Valente who catches the pass and fires a no-look behind-the-back shot to make the score 5-2.

There is more defense for the Wildcats, as they stand tall near the net, regaining possession. This allows Declan Puacz to score again for Neuqua Valley as they trail 5-3 at the end of the first quarter.

Jack Reif opens the second quarter just like the Huskies did in the first with a goal putting the Naperville North lead back up three.

Vasudevan makes yet another save, this time on a penalty chance from the Huskies, keeping the Wildcats within three.

Still applying pressure for Neuqua Valley, Valente smartly floats in what looks to be a pass over the outstretched arms of Uson who is unable to make a save. Neuqua Valley trails 7-4.

Naperville North boys water polo pulls away in the IHSA Sectional Semifinal

With under two and a half minutes left in the third quarter, Grady’s goal makes it 12-5 as Naperville North’s lead grows.

Joe Marrero places in a late for Neuqua Valley, but a final exclamation point from Reif gives Naperville North their 16th goal of the afternoon.

Neuqua Valley has one more opportunity on the penalty shot, but Uson denies him and secures the 16-8 semi-final victory. Naperville North boys water polo will play for the IHSA Sectional championship against Naperville Central.

For more prep sports highlights, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page!