No matter what level, when a team goes unbeaten, it's quite an accomplishment, and El Segundo's boys' water polo team had plenty of pool time Saturday to celebrate finishing 32-0 after winning the Southern Section Division 3 championship with a 15-7 victory over Anaheim Canyon at Mt. San Antonio College.
Goalie Luc Giroux, a four-year starter and the top player in the Pioneer League, did what he does best — deflect shots to get his teammates inspired. Max Hale and Nolan Barnett have been their leading goal scorers.
Coach Nila Ward, who guided the girls' team to a Southern Section title, now has a boys' championship to add to her resume. El Segundo has 14 water polo championship, tying Newport Harbor for most in section history.
The game also was historic in that El Segundo and Canyon both had women head coaches. Celena Photopulos directs Canyon.
In the Open Division, JSerra won its 27th consecutive game behind future Olympian Ryder Dodd in defeating Newport Harbor 16-10. Dodd and Bode Brinkema each finished with five goals.
In Division 1, Huntington Beach and Laguna Beach fought through a 9-9 tie after regulation and two overtimes, forcing the game and trophy to be decided in sudden death. JD Johnson ended it with a goal for Huntington Beach, which won its first title 10-9.
In Division 2, San Marcos defeated Dos Pueblos 9-6.
In Division 4, Max Distaso scored seven goals in Bonita's 16-5 win over Woodbridge.
In Division 5, Ayala defeated Royal 10-7.
In Division 6, Summit defeated Anaheim 13-3.
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.