W. Water Polo: Falcons take El Camino to sudden victory in conference tournament 3rd place game

File Photo: Jewels Longoria-Morasky concluded a record-setting season for the Falcons
File Photo: Jewels Longoria-Morasky concluded a record-setting season for the Falcons
After going through the South Coast Conference season with a 1-5 record and coming in sixth place, the Cerritos College women's water polo team made a real splash in the conference tournament. The Falcons, who were seeded #6 for the tournament, opened with a 10-8 win over #3-seeded East Los Angeles College, which advanced them to the semifinals. A tough 10-7 loss to #2-seeded Mt. San Antonio College dropped Cerritos into the third place game, where they suffered a 10-9 sudden death loss against #4-seeded El Camino College. The Falcons end their season with a 7-17 record.
Cerritos vs. East Los Angeles: In their first game of the tournament, the Falcons found themselves trailing 3-0 in the first period. They were able to draw even by the end of the period, with freshman Jubilee Gil (Paramount HS) scoring with :01 left on the clock. The Cerritos defense picked up their intensity and held East LA scoreless in the second period. The only offense was a goal by freshman Jewels Longoria-Morasky (La Serna HS) with 1:30 remaining in the half. The Falcons did not relinquish their lead, but did find themselves tied, 8-8 with time running out in the fourth period. Freshman Camila Oliveira (Cerritos HS), who put the team up, 8-6 earlier in the period, scored the last two goals of the game in the final 2:45 to secure the upset win for Cerritos.

Oliveira scored five of the team's goals and assisted on three others, while Longoria-Morasky posted four goals, while she shared the team lead of three exclusions drawn with Oliveira and Delainey Garcia (California HS). In goal, freshman Clairissa Nuno (Cerritos HS) turned away nine shots to earn the win.

Cerritos vs. Mt. San Antonio: In their first meeting earlier in the season, the Mounties scored 20 goals against the Falcons. In this semifinal game, Cerritos matched them goal for goal in the first period, as the match was tied, 4-4, while Longoria-Morasky accounting for three of the goals. Mt. SAC outscored the Falcons, 4-1 in the second period to take a three-goal lead, while the team traded two goals each in the second half to close out the scoring. Longoria-Morasky scored five times and registered six exclusions drawn to help Cerritos get 16 6-on-5 advantages in the game. Oliveira produced the other two goals, assisted on three goals and drew four exclusions, with Nuno blocking nine shots.
Cerritos vs. El Camino: In the third place game, the Falcons found themselves trailing, 3-0 after the first period and 5-2 at intermission. Cerritos started to make their comeback in the second half when they scored two of the three goals in the third period. They finally made it all the way back in the fourth on goals by Garcia and Longoria-Morasky to tie the game at 6-6. It was a 7-7 game until the Warriors scored with 1:20 left in regulation. However, Longoria-Morasky not only drew a 5-meter penalty shot with :26 seconds left, she also converted it to tie the game and send it to overtime.

Both teams scored once in each of the two overtime periods, which sent the game to sudden victory. In that period, El Camino was able to score first to come away with the victory.

Longoria-Morasky scored six of the Falcons goals and also drew a season-high nine exclusions, while Oliveira assisted on five of the goals. Nuno was big in net and posted 12 saves for Cerritos.

For her efforts on the season, Longoria-Morasky will end up leading the state in exclusions drawn with 107 and becomes the first player in school history to finish with more than 100. Her offensive exploits resulted in her scoring 109 goals, which is the second most in a season in school history in a season and ranks third in the state at the time of the season ending.