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Yosemite High water polo (photos courtesy Kelley Nelson)

Yosemite High Water Polo Season Wrap-Up

By YHS Correspondent — 

OAKHURST — YHS boys and girls water polo ended their seasons with playoff losses, but took home both league MVP awards.


Seniors Sage Crosswhite and Sophia McGoldrick were selected as North Sequoia League (NSL) boys and girls MVPs, respectively. For McGoldrick, it is her second consecutive NSL MVP award. Fellow seniors Grace Fries and Abby Williams joined McGoldrick as first team all-league players, and juniors Nathaniel Mulkey and Josh Johnson joined Crosswhite on the boys’ all-league first team.

The YHS boys ended their season with a hard-fought playoff loss at Exeter High School, falling 13-7. The boys trailed only 7-5 at halftime, but Exeter gradually pulled away in the second half.  The boys finished the season 2d in the NSL with an 8-4 record.  Crosswhite had 98 goals on the season, good for 2d in the NSL and 7th in the entire Central Section. Mulkey finished his third year starting in goal with 211 saves, good for 2d in the NSL. His average of 9.6 saves per game led the NSL. With all starters except Crosswhite returning next year, the program looks to remain strong for some time to come.

The Badgers girls water polo team dominated the NSL, winning league with an 11-1 record and finishing with a record of 21-2 overall.  Bad luck befell the almost flawless team two days before their second round playoff game against Lemoore when the Badgers’ starting goalie, standout Faith Spangler, suffered an injury unrelated to sports that ended her season. The Badgers lost to Lemoore 7-6.

McGoldrick finished the year 1st in the Central Section with 119 goals, falling just short of the YHS record for goals in a season she set last year (120), but doing so in four fewer games. Fries was also dominant, finishing 5th in the Central Section in goals with 103 and actually outscoring McGoldrick during league play. The Badgers lose McGoldrick, Fries, Willliams, Randi Johnson, Macy Bazzar and McKayla Cunnings to graduation this year.


Enthusiasm and level of play grew noticeably this year under the leadership of first year head coach Erin Capuchino and assistant coach Dylan Thacker.  Thacker is running an offseason water polo program for athletes of all ages. It will be a daily program covering basic to advanced techniques. The club can be joined through the Yosemite Marlins Swim Club with a USA Swim membership.

Thacker can be reached on Facebook or at dthack22@gmail.com for more details.

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