Water Polo: CdM girls win gold in New Zealand

The CdM Aquatics 18-and-under girls' water polo team captured gold Wednesday at the Pan Pacific Youth Water Polo Festival in New Zealand.

Corona del Mar defeated Australia Gold, 6-3, in the Under 18 gold-medal match. Corona del Mar High incoming senior Eliza Britt earned tournament MVP honors.

Incoming CdM senior Grace Morgan scored four goals in the title match and Britt scored twice for CdM, which also went 6-0 in pool play in the tournament. CdM defeated defending tournament champion North Harbour in the semifinals, 10-5, with Britt scoring five goals.

Goalkeeper Heidi Ritner, who will be a junior, also had a standout tournament for CdM. Last week, CdM's girls took fourth place in the Pan Pacific Under 20 tournament.

The CdM girls' team was coached by Ross Sinclair and made up of varsity players at Corona del Mar High, minus incoming junior Maddie Musselman, who earlier this month was in Russia helping the U.S. senior women's national team win gold at the Kirishi Cup.

CdM's gold medal run in New Zealand was just the second time an American team has won a title at the Pan Pacific Festival.

CdM's boys were also in competition in the Under 18 tournament, with four separate teams competing among the 20 teams in the tournament. CdM's squads took fifth, sixth, 17th and 18th. CdM's top two teams ended up playing in the fifth-place match after losing tight quarterfinal matches.

The CdM boys' varsity teams also competed in the Under 20 tournament, where CdM Blue took fifth place and CdM White was eighth. In the Under 16 tournament, the CdM junior varsity squad finished fourth out of 26 teams. The CdM frosh/soph squad was 20th.

— Matt Szabo

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