Loyola relishes MIAA water polo title win over Calvert Hall

After being benched as recently as a month ago, Loyola's Cameron James made a big splash in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association championship Saturday at McDonogh against archrival Calvert Hall.

The junior scored three of his four goals in the final period to lift Loyola to a 10-6 victory, powering the Dons to their second straight title.


The teams entered the final quarter tied, 6-6, when James took over.

He scored three minutes into the period, then added another goal less than two minutes later.


"It was not expected," Loyola coach Keith Schertle said. "But it was spectacular."

Loyola (14-2) also received a standout performance from senior Oliver Bennett, who finished with three goals.

Michael Feihe, Kendrick McDonald and Kevin Balhoff also scored for the Dons while teammate Cole Lindner recorded 10 saves in the Loyola goal.

Matt Rothman led Calvert Hall with two goals and Carpenter Warren, Rob Walker, Corey Park and Steve Roberts had one apiece for the Cardinals.

Early in the third quarter, Loyola took a 5-3 lead before Calvert Hall rallied to draw even. The team exchanged goals and maintained the deadlock into the final period.

Calvert Hall coach Mark Ruch said he knew the first team to score in the fourth quarter would prevail.

"We have such a history with them and the games are so emotional," Ruch added. "A lot of it had to do with momentum. They scored first and ran with it."

With back-to-back titles, the Dons hope they are now on their way to continuing their domination after ending the Cardinals' eight-year run of championships last year.


"This year was special because we proved last year wasn't a fluke," said Schertle, whose team beat Calvert Hall, 8-7, and 15-9, during the regular season. "I imagine we will be one of the favorites again next year."