Co-Captain Travis Bouscaren ’14 fed a pass to Joe Faller ’14 who ripped a shot past the Hopkins goalie, securing Andover Boys Water Polo’s victory in its final home game of the season.
Andover defeated Hopkins 26-5, returning to the pool with a vengeance after losing two consecutive games, which endangered the team’s bid in the Final Four Tournament semifinals.
“[My goal] was just one of the instances of the stellar awareness and teamwork we had in this game,” said Faller. “Everything was just clicking on Saturday, and we did a really great job sharing the ball, moving on offense and finding the open man for the perfect assist and goal.”
“It was a little bit nostalgic after four years here to be playing for the last time in our own pool. Seeing how far myself and all of our other Seniors have come was amazing, and I’m glad we were all rewarded with that final win at home,” Faller continued.
11 players scored goals against Hopkins, including Bouscaren with five goals, and Aaron Teo ’15 and Peter Fanikos ’14 with four goals each.
Andover’s almost impenetrable defense proved critical to the team’s win. Rome Arnold ’14 and Eliot Sagay ’15 combined for 13 saves, keeping Hopkins from any chance of recovering.
“Hopkins was a young team coming in,” said Co-Captain Andrew Yang ’14, “so we knew that we were not facing the same level of competition as Deerfield or Exeter, but we still prepared for them as we would any team.”
“Obviously it felt good to win the last home game of my career, but that is not the ultimate goal,” said Yang. “We are looking ahead to the playoffs and making sure that we prepared to play our best at the tournament next Saturday.”
Andover will play Loomis on Friday in the quarterfinals for its first shot at winning the Final Four Tournament.
Earlier this season, Andover and Loomis battled to the buzzer in overtime, with Loomis surging back from behind multiple times, forcing both teams into double overtime. Andover managed to pull ahead and secure the win, but Loomis will prove a challenging opponent.
“We had a tough win in overtime, but neither team was playing at their best. This week we’ll be working the areas that we were lacking in last time we played that team and getting pumped for the end of the season. The pressure is on now,” said Faller.