The Cuesta College men's water polo team beat Los Angeles Valley 9-7 in the championship game of the Western State Conference Championships on Saturday to earn the conference title for the third straight year.
Cuesta (27-9), which has won the title seven of the past nine years, lost 10-6 to the Monarchs earlier this year, but this time around jumped out early, taking a 6-2 lead at halftime and maintaining its lead in the second half to win 9-7.
Matt Giancanelli had three goals, Tracy Ainslie had two and Juan Valdez, Austin McCall, Georan Meendering and Lukas Lastra each had one for the Cougars.
Cuesta goalie Brady Moore had 17 saves in the win.
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Los Angeles Valley’s Gor Asryan and Glicerio Vergara each had three goals and Jack Snyder added one, while goalie Raul Velasrgyan had seven saves.
Cuesta’s team “played phenomenally,” according to head coach John Marsh, and now the Cougars move on to the Southern California playoffs, with the brackets to be determined later this week.