Water polo - Playing without their starting goalie, Kyle Hansen, the Tigers finish 0-7 and lose three of their seven games by just one goal

ORANGE COUNTY — Despite strong offensive performances from Spencer McMaster and Craig Beecher, the Chehalem Water Polo boys U-18 team could not break through for a win at the USA Water Polo Junior Olympics July 27-30 in Orange County, Calif.

The Tigers were without starting goalie Kyle Hansen and came out on the wrong end of three one-goal games in the tournament to finish 0-7.

Seven different players scored in the tournament-opening 17-9 loss to L.A. Premier before McMaster and Beecher combined to score seven times in a 14-10 loss to Connecticut team Chelsea Piers.

Chehalem was stymied in a 15-6 loss to Lamorinda, then suffered its first heartbreak of the tournament in a 7-6 setback to Thunder Black. Taos Stewart, an Ashland player who was joined the Tigers the last two summers, scored four goals and Beecher added two in the narrow defeat.

Beecher and Stewart then scored three times apiece in the next contest, but Chehalem fell 11-10 after holding a 9-8 edge entering the fourth period.

McMaster, Beecher and Stewart had two goals apiece in a 12-8 loss to Kearns, with McMaster adding two assists and two steals.

Chehalem again led 9-8 entering the fourth quarter of its final game against Ann Arbor, Mich., outfit A2 Water Polo, but saw the game slip away once more, 11-10. McMaster scored four times to lead the offense, with Corbin Day adding three tallies and Beecher two.

Beecher and Stewart each finished the tournament with 15 goals, with Beecher also registering a team-high 13 assists. McMaster scored 13 times, handed out 11 assists and led the team with 16 steals to Beecher’s 14.

Tyler Bell and Eric Wilson split time in goal for the Tigers with Hansen unavailable.

Head coach Jim McMaster said that Chehalem was greatly undersized compared to many of the teams in the tournament, but that the experience should serve the group well this fall during the high school season.

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