Jamian Villareal

Reeedley High's Jamian Villareal looked for a shot while guarded by Edison High's Malcolm Wanless in the Pirates' 17-12 loss to the Tigers in the Central Section Division 3 semifinals on Nov. 7.

The Reedley High boys water polo team reached the semifinal round of the Central Section Division 3 with strong defensive play and timely scoring.

But the top-seeded Edison High Tigers had too much firepower on Nov. 7, scoring the games first three goals and then erupting for 10 second half scores in a 17-12  victory in Fresno. The loss ended an 18-13 season for the Pirates, who posted playoff victories over Sierra and Exeter.

"I think it was more a little bit of inexperience on our side," RHS head coach Darrin Hammond said of his squad, which only has one senior. "You've got to take out that three spot they put on us real quick. It's tough to come back from that."

Junior Jamian Villareal – who paced the offense with seven goals — scored twice while Jacob Laine and Ethan MIlton added scores as Reedley crept back within a goal at 5-4 just two minutes before halftime. But Edison sophomore Tyler Mrkaich answered with a pair of scores at halftime to give the Tigers (23-6) a 7-4 lead. Senior Damian Young then scored six of his eight goals in the second half as the hosts pounced on RHS mistakes.

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