Pennridge boys’ water polo had an incredible day at the prestigious Beast of the East Tournament on Saturday at Governor Mifflin. The Rams swam and shot to three straight wins and came out on top in the Flight 2 section of the tournament. The tournament brought together 37 teams from Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Pennridge started the day with a tough win over St. Xavier, 10-8. It was a big lift for the Rams after a heartbreaking, 13-12 loss to Penn Charter the night before to start the tournament. Their second game against La Salle was a bit of payback as the Explorers beat the Rams, 15-11, recently. The Rams turned that around with a hard-fought, 11-10 win. Pennridge’s final game against Erie Cathedral Prep was a story of two halves. Erie took an early first-period, 6-3 lead, and then totally shut down the Rams in the second period to take a 9-3 lead into halftime. The Rams came out strong in the third period as Nick Spehar threw in all five Pennridge goals to tighten the score to 12-8. The final period was all Pennridge as Colin Russell fired in three goals, Spehar two and D.J. Maurone one while shutting out Erie and winning the game, 14-12. Pennridge goalie Jake Aigeldinger was exceptional in turning away shot after shot. Spehar was also outstanding, scoring nine times.
After easily defeating a shorthanded Hazleton team, 21-8, and using its starters sparingly, Pennridge boys’ water polo ran into a much tougher opponent in the second game of the Beast of the East Tournament. Hosting the first round of the tournament, Pennridge faced a strong Penn Charter team. The Rams jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first period and led by as much as 4-0 in the early part of the second period before Penn Charter came storming back to tie the game at 4-4. Pennridge fired right back to pull ahead by three, eventually ending the first half with a 7-5 lead. Penn Charter outscored the Rams, 4-2, in the third period to tie the game at 9-9. The final period was a back-and-forth battle, with Penn Charter scoring four goals to the Rams’ three to win, 13-12. The Rams had three multiple goal scorers, led by Nick Spehar with five. Callum Malcolm had three and D.J. Maurone two. A great defensive effort by Kyle Frerichs and Colin Russell kept the game close. The tournament continues for Pennridge on Saturday at Governor Mifflin.
Upper Dublin boys’ water polo came ready to play at the Pennridge pool on Thursday. It was a tight back-and-forth contest as the Cardinals led at the half. They maintained the lead into the fourth period. The more experienced Rams had decided not to play four of their starters, giving the young players a chance to see some action. Even with starters D.J. Maurone, Colin Russell, Nick Spehar and Jake Aigeldinger on the bench, the Rams pulled away in the final period for a 17-11 victory. Callum Malcolm led the scoring for Pennridge with five goals and Tommy Schneider tossed in three as the team evened its conference record at 3-3.
Pennridge boys’ water polo went down to Souderton, 22-16, on Tuesday. The Rams jumped out to an early 2-1 lead at Souderton’s pool in Franconia. It was an evenly matched battle as the first quarter ended in a 6-6 tie. Nick Spehar fired in three of those six goals for the Rams. The half ended with Souderton leading, 9-8. But the Indians took over in the third quarter, outscoring the Rams, 7-3. Pennridge fought hard in the final period, but couldn’t catch up. Spehar led Pennridge for the fourth game in a row, scoring seven goals. Pennridge is now 2-3 in conference play.
Pennridge boys’ water polo lost to LaSalle, 15-11, on Thursday to even its conference record at 2-2. LaSalle jumped out to an early lead and held it into the third quarter. The Rams battled to tie the game at 8-8 midway through the third quarter. But they were weakened in the second half as injured starter Reilly Dolan couldn’t play while starter Colin Russell fouled out midway through the third quarter. Pennridge fought hard to stay close, but LaSalle overpowered it in the final period to pull away to win by four goals. Nick Spehar led the Rams with five goals. He was followed by D.J. Maurone with three. LaSalle’s leading scorers were Luke Chadewic and Kyle McElwee, each with four goals.
Pennridge boys’ water polo improved its conference record to 2-1 with a 13-11 victory over rival Springfield (Montco) on Tuesday. The Rams scored early, jumping out to a 2-0 lead, and ended the first quarter up, 3-1. The Spartans battled back, outscoring the Rams, 3-2, in the second quarter and trailed by one at the half. The referees called a tight game forcing Pennridge starting seniors D.J. Marrone and Colin Russell to foul out early in the second half. But the Rams, with their strength and depth, outscored the Spartans, 8-7, in the half to win by two goals. Nick Spehar led Pennridge with five goals to bring his conference total to nine in three games.
Pennridge boys’ water polo creamed Upper Merion, 18-5, on Friday. The Rams led, 6-0, at the half. It could have been worse for Upper Merion, but head coach Ken Vincent pulled most of his starters midway through the first quarter. With their young players, the Rams outscored Upper Merion, 12-5, in the second half. Nick Spehar led the Rams with three goals, while five others scored two goals each.
Pennridge boys’ water polo opened league play on Wednesday with a 14-12 setback to rival Wissahickon. With the score tied at 8-8 at halftime, the Rams held a one-shot lead midway through the fourth quarter. The Trojans battled back to take a 13-12 lead with a minute to play. Pennridge missed its final three shots to fall to 0-1 on the season. D.J. Marrone led the Rams with five goals.