By Joe Naiman
Ramona High School’s boys water polo team and Serra High School’s team split the final 22 goals of the teams’ Sept. 27 game at the Tierrasanta Recreation Center, and Ramona outscored Canyon Crest after the first quarter of the Sept. 30 game in Ramona, but early deficits led to the Bulldogs losing the Serra game by a 14-11 score and the Canyon Crest match by a 9-5 margin.
“We’re not starting out strong enough in the first quarter,” said Coach Donnie Williams.
Serra scored the game’s first three goals before Ramona had the final score of the first quarter. The Conquistadors led 7-5 at halftime and 12-8 after three periods.
“We had a hard time coming back from a first-quarter deficit,” Williams said.
Ted Dean and Zach Lane each scored three goals for the Bulldogs, Michael Talento put two balls into the net, and Nick Brierton, Spenser Jones and Jesse Reiling had one goal apiece.
Canyon Crest’s 5-0 lead after the first quarter meant that the Ravens staved off four Ramona man-up opportunities due to penalty exclusions.
“We basically outscored them the rest of the game,” Williams said. “We just can’t give up these big leads early.”
Dean scored twice against the Ravens while Brierton, Talento and Pat Kettle each placed one ball into the net.
The losses gave the Bulldogs a 4-5 record entering Palomar League play, which includes Ramona’s league home opener Oct. 6 against Rancho Bernardo.
“We’ve just got to work on a few things,” Williams said. “I think they’ll be very strong by the end of the season.”