The Ventura College Women's Water Polo team has advanced to the Western State Conference Tournament championship with a pair of wins Thursday in San Luis Obispo. VC, the No. 2 seed in the draw, downed No. 7 Los Angeles Pierce 19-5 in the morning quarterfinal before defeating No. 3 Allan Hancock in the afternoon semifinal 20-7. Lauren Wiksell and Maeve Flynn each netted seven goals on the day to lead the Pirates (23-7, 8-1).
Ventura 19, Los Angeles Pierce 5
The Pirates opened the tournament with a resounding 19-5 quarterfinal win over the Brahmas. VC was ahead 9-2 after one quarter of play and 15-4 at halftime before cruising the rest of the way. MaryBeth Schroder led the charge with five goals while Paige Treloar-Ballard, Wiksell, Flynn, Samantha Ontiveros and Christina Jimenez all had two scores each. Kelsey Golden recorded three assists and Jimenez had two helpers. Nicole Garcia had a solid effort in goal with seven saves and five assists.
Ventura 20, Allan Hancock 7
The Pirates advanced to the conference finals with a strong performance against the Bulldogs. VC jumped out 4-1 early and led 7-4 at the end of the first quarter. Four unanswered goals late in the second period opened up a 13-5 advantage and Ventura led at the break, 13-6. Wiksell and Flynn each netted five goals while Treloar-Ballard had four scores. Ylva Ostlin had three goals with five assists and Flynn led the defensive effort with five steals. Devon Compton had seven saves and three steals in the cage.
The Pirates will play for the program's ninth WSC title on Saturday at 1;30 pm at the Cuesta College pool in San Luis Obispo against top-seed Santa Barbara City College. VC is making its 12th appearance in the conference championship match in the past 15 years. The team's 23 win also sets a high-water mark in the 17-year tenure of head coach Mary Giles whose 2001 team posted 21 wins.