BY CAROL GULLSTAD
Special to the Reporter
The Mercer Island Islanders boys water polo team rebounded well from a heartbreaking 8-7 loss to Roosevelt in the Washington high school water polo state tournament semifinals.
The Islanders defeated Auburn-Riverside 16-13, clinching a berth in the state tournament third/fourth place game against Bainbridge Island. Mercer Island combined a productive offense with a defensive wall route to a 11-5 victory capturing a third place finish. Mercer Island goalie Will Cero had 18 saves in the win. The Islanders formidable defense combined for nine steals.
“I’m proud of the way the guys played. They lost a close game to Roosevelt, a very competitive game. They bounced back and played great as a team to secure third place,” Islanders head coach Calvin White said.
Mercer Island senior Daniel Kavesh scored a game-high five goals in the final contest of his high school career. Senior Sam Nair added three goals and Max Vacca added two goals in the win. Four Islanders athletes received all-state honors during the tournament. Kavesh earned first-team all tournament honors. Carson Coe and Nair nabbed second-team all tournament honors and freshman Max Vacca captured third-team all tournament honors. White is excited about the future of the Islanders water polo program.
“The future looks bright as we will return many up and comers but we will miss our great seniors who have led us this year,” White said.