Season home openers bring added excitement for a team, but also added pressure
By Ryan Schuler
February 9, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)--Coming off an emotional 13-12 win over No. 15 Long Beach State last Saturday, the No. 9 San Diego State women’s water polo team looked to prove to the home crowd at Aztec Aquaplex on the SDSU campus that they are better than their performance at Long Beach showed.
And that is exactly what the Aztecs did, as they defeated No. 15 Hartwick, 16-6.
“I think we were all just really excited about it being our first home game,” senior goalkeeper Kelly Campoli said. “We wanted to come out with a lot of intensity, and we just wanted to keep our winning streak alive.”
With the victory, SDSU has won its last six home-openers and improves to a perfect 5-0 record. Hartwick drops to 2-2 after the loss. The Hawks took an early 1-0 lead over the Aztecs less than two minutes into the game, but it was all SDSU from there. The Aztecs would counter with four goals of their own to take a 4-1 lead after the first quarter, with two goals coming from junior Amber Pezzolla.
By halftime, SDSU’s lead had grown to 8-3 after goals from Pezzolla, senior Meaghan Poland, freshman Carina Carballo, and freshman Tori Long. The Aztecs continued to pour it on in the second half. Goals by senior Leanne Ford, and freshmen Kelli Boling Taelor Moreno finished up the strong performance.
“We knew we needed to not take this game lightly, and not treat this game like we were going to win by a lot,” Poland said. Pezzolla finished the game with four goals, as Moreno added three and Poland, Ford and Boling each chipped in two. Poland has now scored at least two goals in each game this season. Campoli finished with 16 saves. The Aztecs return to action on Saturday at the Triton Invitational at UCSD. SDSU will play Sonoma State at 10:40 a.m. in Canyonview Pool.