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Ceres High girls waterpolo team finish second in league
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Ceres High varsity girls water polo standout Haley Fisicaro felt helpless while watching from the bench during the fourth period of Wednesday's Western Athletic Conference title-deciding matchup with visiting Los Banos.

The Tigers pulled away for a 14-7 win over the Bulldogs.

Fisicaro tallied a team-high four goals before being majored in the third period. Haley was assessed three kickouts for physical play.

"I wanted to be in the pool so bad," she said. "My teammates still did great without me."

Jordan Pata had three goals for the Bulldogs, who placed second in the WAC (6-2) and secured their first-ever trip to the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.

"We had a really good season," Fisicaro said.

Los Banos outscored Ceres High 12-5 during the final three periods.

"They had size and speed on us," Haley said.

Fisicaro scored three goals as the Bulldogs cut the deficit to 9-5 late in the third period.

Haley picked up her third major foul and was ejected at the 1:16 mark.

"Honestly, it was the officiating," said Fisicaro, whose team earned 12 kickouts, eight more than Los Banos, during the course of the game. "We did all we could. Water polo is a touchy sport. Sometimes things are acceptable and some aren't."

Ceres High tied for last place with Central Catholic at 1-9 in the Valley Foothill League last year.

The Bulldogs fell one win shy of a playoff berth in 2010.

Ceres High finished fourth in the Modesto Metro Conference with an 8-6 record in 2009.

"This is the best we've ever done," said Fisicaro, a fourth-year player. "It's really amazing when you step back and think about it."