Girls Water Polo: Mother McAuley motors past Lincoln-Way Central
By Steve Millar For Sun-Times Media March 4, 2013 9:38PM
Lincoln-Way Central's Liz Klock takes a shot against Mother McAuley's Vicky Arciniega (left) and Sarah Abbott (right). | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 6, 2013 6:18AM
Mother McAuley long has had a dominant defense. The Mighty Macs have been trying to develop an offense to match.
Against another of the state’s top teams Monday, McAuley made quite an opening night statement that it will be a balanced squad this year.
After falling behind 3-1 early, the host Mighty Macs scored the next 12 goals, rolling to a 17-5 win over Lincoln-Way Central.
“Our girls did amazing,” McAuley coach Vanessa Carroll said. “Our offense has come a long way. This is a very big win to have under our belts the first game.”
It should be an exciting season for both teams, with each returning six of seven starters from state quarterfinalists.
Monday, though, all the fun was had by McAuley, which got five goals from Clare Bryar and three from Kristen Kleist. Sarah Abbott made seven saves.
Meghan McLean, Danijela Jackovich and Kristi Howe scored in the opening minutes for the Knights. After the third goal, Carroll called a timeout.
“I told them ‘You girls are so much better than you’re playing right now,’ ” Carroll said.
The Mighty Macs proved her right, dominating the rest of the way. Bryar scored twice on fast breaks in the final 23 seconds of the quarter to tie the game.
Going into the deep end in the second, McAuley outscored the Knights 7-0 to take control.
“We were a little nervous at the start for our first game,” Bryar said. “We got going. We all know how each other plays. We’ve all played together and that helps. This game was a big confidence boost.”
Bryar also played a big role in the team’s defense on Central star Jackovich, who was held to two goals.
“The pressure that (McAuley) will put on you is tough,” Central coach Karen Desruisseaux said. “They’re a physical team, and any team that can hold Danijela to two goals is doing something right.
“We’ll be seeing them again at state. That rematch will be something to see.”
Vicky Arciniega and Mary June O’Connell scored twice each for McAuley.