SB Aquatics Club brings home 2 national titles

Santa Barbara's champion U14 Girls Team

Santa Barbara’s champion U14 Girls Team

Santa Barbara's champion U12 Girls Team

Santa Barbara’s champion U12 Girls Team


Santa Barbara Aquatics Club struck gold at the 2013 National Club Championships held in Riverside over the weekend as two girls teams won national titles.

The 14U girls led by Cathy Neushul and Connor Levoff advanced first in bracket way with a dominating win over perennial water polo powerhouse Socal. They then defeated clubs from Foothill and Laguna Beach before a re-match with Socal in the championship. Santa Barbara jumped on Socal from the outset but relinquished a three-goal margin late in the third quarter to lead 6-5. SBAC responded to the Socal rally with a three goal spurt to win the 14U Gold Medal 9-6. The 14U girls included Jesse Brummett, Mackenzie Fell, Paige Hauschild, Abbi Hill, Olivia Kistler, Kailie McGeoy, Ryann Neushul, Thea Neushul, Brittany Prentice, Georgia Ransone, Josie Thorpe, and Whitney Steidl.

Petra Huebner-Schurch and Sophia Trumbell split time in goal for the 2013 National Club Champions.

Led by Chuckie Roth and Pam Tanase, the 12U girls defended their 2012 National Club Championship title with a 12-7 pounding of 680 Water Polo of Northern California in the championship game. Roth?s Regulators advanced first out of bracket play with a defeat of a seasoned Diablo Water Polo Club and then proceeded to dominate Chino Hills in the semi-final before finishing off 680 in the final. The 12U?s included Liliana Rose Akin, Anna Hepp, Abbi Hill, Mia Ibernino, Olivia Kistler, Cassidy Miller, Sarah Owens, Kayla Peacock, Chloe Pena, Ella Prentice and Sabina Shackelford. Grace Raisin was in goal for the 2013 National Club Champions.

SBAC?s 18U girls, two-time defending National Club Champions, came within inches of winning an unprecedented third straight title. Led by Cathy Neushul and Connor Levoff, the 18?s advanced to the semifinals with victories over perennial power house San Diego Shores and Huntington Beach Water Polo. The team then defeated Saddleback El Toro Water Polo (SET), an all-star team that included two USA Junior National Team members along with stars Brenna Thomas and Mackenzie Baldridge who will attend UCSB in the Fall.

In the championship game vs. Socal Santa Barbara held a two-goal lead late in the first quarter but Socal caught them in the third and the match turned into a defensive battle with the teams tied at the end of the third. SBAC rallied in the final period to lead 8-7 but relinquished their lead and trailed 9-8 in the final minute missing a tying attempt with less than ten seconds on the clock. The 18s included Anna Brummett (SBHS), Shannon Cleary (DPHS), Jessica Gaffney (SBHS), Betsy Hendrix (SBHS), Laurel Kistler (DPHS/UCSD), Hanna Koper (SMHS/Brown), Frannie Kuesis (SMHS), Sophie Maas (SBHS), Jamie Neushul (DPHS/Stanford), Kelsey O?Brien (SBHS/UCLA), Ari St. Oeger (DPHS), Sophie Trabucco (SBHS/UCSB) and Tess Wardle (VHS/UCSB). Britten Vilander (DPHS) and Madeline Trabucco (SBHS/CAL) shared time in goal.

Connor Levoff?s 16U girls team started the tournament with a string of victories in bracket play that led to a face off with 680 Water Polo of Northern California for a birth in the semi-finals. The 16?s battled back from a five goal deficit to tie the match in the fourth quarter. SBAC then fell in sudden death overtime. The 16s ended up taking 8th place at the 2013 National Club Championships. The squad included Kaybree Albright, Megan Bergthold, Victoria Bray, Anna Brummet, Jesse Brummett, Katherine Koski, Kristina Garcia, Hailey Gellert, Kelsey Gellert, Paige Hauschild, Riley Heiduk, Betsy Hendrix, Ryann Neushul, Leah Parlato, Brittany Prentice, Jessee Ransone, Toni Shackelford, and Ariana Singer. Jenna Phreaner and Amanda Longan split time in goal for SBAC.