Both of Sierra’s water polo teams are headed for the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.
The girls are first-time qualifiers after waxing rival East Union 21-2 in the Valley Oak League finale held at Manteca High. The boys took care of the Lancers 26-3 and are returning to the postseason for a second straight year.
Lauren Ellis scored five of her seven goals in the opening period in the girls game.
Hailey Danel added three goals, while Zoe Sandoval, Madison Madrid, Stephanie Thomason and Molly Allen pitched in two apiece. Amy Fadeff, Maya Murillo and Bianca Fraser each scored one. Fadeff also had three assists. Sierra improved to 17-7 on the season.
Kylie Jo Barker put away both of East Union’s goals in the second half.
Erfan Ballew accumulated six goals and seven assists to lead Sierra’s boys (9-7). Troy Morrow also netted six goals to go with three assists. Collins Schluer added five goals, and Zac Walmer had three.
Noah Brum buried two goals. Dallin Murray, Carson Murray, Noah Sandoval and Wyatt Bauer chipped in one each.
Matthew Potter, Alexander Freeman and Davis Duff accounted for East Union’s goals.
The Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs begin next week.
Ripon girls 15, Oakdale 4
The Indians (16-10) can now shift their focus on defending the SJS Division III title after repeating as Valley Oak League champions.
Reyna Biedermann led the attack with seven goals, while Sami Scheid finished with three goals and four assists to go with seven steals. Maddie Curtiss (one), Faith Fasani (two), Crystallyn Tran (one goal, three assists) and Maddie Stewart (goal) contributed to the scoring.
Goalie Tiffany Hunter racked up six saves and six assists.
Ripon boys 13, Oakdale 4
Ripon (22-6) collected its sixth straight win and claimed another VOL title while preparing for the competitive Division II bracket. The D-III champion Indians have been elevated because of the “continued success” rule.
They spread out the attack in the regular-season finale at Oakdale, as Chetan Harvey (two goals, two blocks), Brody Biedermann (two goals, three steals), McKeane Beier (goal, four steals). Ryan Bell (two goals), Ben Svoboda (two goals), Matt Lee (two goals), Teo West (goal) and Owenn Curtiss (goal, two steals) got on the score sheet.
Benny Rogers started in goal and had two steals in the first half. Freshman Andrew Hanker took over for the final two periods, finishing with three saves.
Ripon Devin Fitzpatrick earned the Most Outstanding Male award after winning the league finale in 17 minutes, 4.51 seconds Wednesday at River Bluff Regional Park in Ceres. The senior also won the first two TVL cluster meets of the season.
The Indians finished third as a team with 67 points behind Hilmar (61) and Livingston (63) in a close race. Valente Hernandez, Rajdeep Singh, Moses Gomez and Jonathan Salinas finished 15-18 in that order for Ripon.
Ripon’s girls also took third with Jenna Skavdahl leading the charge. She placed fifth in 21:35.22. Mallory Govia (eighth, 21:57.32) also finished in the top 10. Alyson Harvey came in 16th place. Hilmar edged out Hughson 51-53 in the team standings.
Both of Ripon’s lower levels finished as runners-up. The JV boys were paced by James Wilkins (fourth, 12:13.87), while Celeste Nunez (fourth, 15:12.27) spearheaded the girls.
Western Athletic Conference
Lathrop’s varsity boys and girls both took fifth place in the conference final held at O’Neill Forebay. Beyer claimed the boys title, while Pacheco won the girls.
Sophomore Riley Gier led the Spartans boys team with a 20th-place finish in 18:29.6. Adrian Vaye and Oliver Hernandez placed 22nd and 23rd, respectively, and Amani Vaye was 25th.
Sophomore Jacquelyn Pena Santillan paced the girls team in 17th place (23:56.1). Lilliana Rodriguez took 22nd.
Sheily Soto-Aguilar highlighted Lathrop in the lower levels, as she won the 2.1-mile frosh-soph race in 15:08.6.