It’s been a banner year for the Millikan girls’ water polo team. The Rams defeated Long Beach Poly to claim second place in the Moore League, and put up a dominant performance in the opening round of the CIF-SS Division 4 playoffs, defeating Marymount 13-8 in a game that wasn’t in question in the fourth quarter.
Millikan (20-10) advances to the second round, where they’ll face the winner of Northwood/Capistrano Valley on Thursday evening. The Rams would host Northwood or would travel to Capistrano Valley.
Millikan went up 5-1 in the first quarter against Marymount, scoring on four consecutive possessions as shot after shot found their mark.
“We had our moments finding the back of the cage,” said Millikan coach Jose Guzman. “We worked on outside shots all day and we had success—we wanted to put a stamp on this game right away.”
Millikan had to hold off Marymount star player Reagan Whitney, who’s signed with Cal. Whitney scored all eight of Marymount’s goals, including the first of the game, to put them up 1-0.
The Rams played great defense and turned that into fast counter offense in the first quarter, scoring on five of their last six possessions of the quarter to take a 5-1 lead, as Jennine Osorio, Evelyn Giroin, Kaytlin Watkins, and Emma Robertson (2) put in scores.
It was more of the same in the second quarter, with Osorio putting in three of her team-high four goals to keep Millikan up by five at halftime.
“I came into today really confident,” said Osorio. “We were prepared and we were ready—we wanted to score early and get up fast and we did. This was great.”
Osorio also had two steals and two assists.
The Rams held the Marymount scoring down in part thanks to goalie Makayla Lankford, who made a number of tough saves.
“She’s still young but she’s already really solid,” said Guzman. “She was a leader for us today.”
After Osorio’s four goals, Millikan was led by three from Robertson, and a pair from Watkins and Giroin. Kaytlin Weller had a goal from half tank with a minute left that skipped past the Marymount goalie.