Pierce College’s women’s water polo team finished off its 2013 season strong during their match at home against Citrus College on Wednesday, Oct. 30, when the team started with six unanswered goals and ended the game 12-5.
Seven of Pierce’s 12 goals were scored by set position player Sam Buliavac.
“It’s my last home game playing here so I really wanted to finish the way I started last season, which was helping the team as much as I could,” said Buliavac.
She went on to say she thought the team played well as a whole.
“We played great. I think everybody was on the same page,” said Buliavac.
This match was not only the final home game of the season but also the final home game for many of the players. Once it ended, their emotions started to come out as they hugged and even cried.
“They came out on fire and ready to play hard because this is their last game at home,” said Judi Terhar, Pierce’s assistant coach.
Even though Pierce beat Citrus 6-0 with less than two minutes left in the first half, the game was not over. Citrus fired back by scoring less than 20 seconds after Pierce’s sixth goal, and ended the half 6-2 after scoring with one second remaining on the clock.
Citrus’ head coach Andrew Silva thought his team played well against the reigning champions.
“The girls put out a real strong effort. We just didn’t execute as well as we should have toward the middle of the game,” said Silva.
According to Terhar a lot of the credit for Pierce being where they are is due to Moriah Van Norman, a member of the silver medal winning 2008 US Olympic woman’s water polo team, and her sister Sarah Van Norman, a member of the 2010 NCAA tournament championship team from the University of Southern California.
“You’ve got both Moriah and her sister Sarah who are the best coaches you could ever have at a community college,” said Terhar.
Now that the regular season has ended the team is preparing for its upcoming conference tournament on Nov. 8 and 9, which will be held at Santa Monica College.
“It’s gonna be a dogfight for number one to see who’s gonna win,” said Terhar.
Pierce is going into the tournament as the number one seed and reigning champions. The team is looking forward to the upcoming matches and is confident that their season will not end there.
Builavac believes the team will make it to the state championship tournament but is unsure of how Pierce will fare. In terms of the conference tournament they are headed to in nine days she has no apprehension.
“We’re gonna win. We’re gonna go undefeated again this year,” said Buliavac in reference to the tournament.