Schurr makes history, advances to first CIF-SS girls water polo final

By Tony Ciniglio
The feeling was still fresh. The moment raw. The Adrenaline still pumping.Finally the Schurr High School girls water polo team came together and let out a roar as it celebrated advancing to the program’s first CIF Southern Section final.Schurr reveled in the moment as the high-fives, hugs and smiles gave way to jumping and screaming for joy.“It was like a mosh pit,” Schurr’s Stephany Velasquez said.Schurr scored the final four goals of the match to stun top-seeded Agoura 7-5 in the Division 2 semifinals at the William Wollett Aquatics Center to punch its ticket to the program’s first CIF final.Schurr (30-2) advances to play Riverside Poly in Saturday’s final. Riverside Poly was a 6-5 winner over Riverside’s King.
“This group has been working so hard since September,” said Schurr coach David Argumosa, in his fifth season. “We did not play that many matches early, so we were not ranked very high in the beginning of the season, but the whole idea was to gear toward the end of the season.
“I’ve got a deep bench and I can plug different players into different spots and not miss a beat. Having the ability and the right pieces of the puzzle made all the difference.”
Agoura (22-9) missed a chance to make its first CIF-SS final since 2007.
It was heartbreak city for Agoura, which led 5-3 with 5:57 left in the match after a goal from Lexi Rond, who had three goals. Maddie Demattia scored twice.
“I just thought at that point, it was ours,” said Rond, who is headed to Santa Barbara City College to continue her career. “I wish I could tell you what happened there. I’m honestly not sure. The only thing I’m sure about is that we gave it our all. We still had a great season and I was honored to be able to play with these girls.”
Schurr did it with balance as seven players accounted for the seven goals.
Lizbeth Guzman, Milena Guzman and Nayeli Cisneros scored in the first half.
Then Valeria Martinez, Cynthia Rosa, Kayla Santos and Jassmine Kezman rattled off the four consecutive goals in the fourth quarter. Santos delivered the tie-breaking goal with 1:29 left in the match.
“I didn’t know what to do. I was scared,” Santos said. “Should I shoot it? Should I not shoot it? So I just shot it and it went in.
“I was so hyped. I was like ‘Whoo.’”
The dagger came from Kezman with 31 seconds left to put the match on ice to cap the dramatic comeback.
“Their goalie kept fading with our shots, so I decided to go near-post instead. That put us up by two, and even if they scored, we knew we had this game,” Kezman said. “When we were down, we never thought it was over. The game was still going and we were not going to stop until the end.”
Schurr goalkeeper Itzahiana Baca said she liked the way her defense responded when Schurr began making its fourth-quarter comeback.
“All of their shooters were really good, but my team just really stepped up, especially in that fourth quarter,” Baca said.
Schurr’s comeback foiled a fantastic performance from Agoura goalkeeper Emma Pfister, who made 11 saves, including a pivotal stop of a 5-meter shot midway through the second quarter that seemed to give Agoura momentum, at least for a little while.
“It could be all in my head, but I did notice a change in the team after that 5-meter,” Pfister said. “We got our normal Agoura mentality back.
“We played a really great game. Did it end the way we wanted? No, but it was still a great season.”

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