36 | February 15, 2017 | Malibu surfside news Sports malibusurfsidenews.com Athlete of the Week 10 Questions with Gaia Hinds Gaia Hinds, 17, is a junior utility player for the Malibu Sharks girls water polo team. What first got you into water polo? When I was 10 years old I went to surf camp over the summer, where I met the coach of the Malibu youth team, Hayden Goldberg. He saw my swimming skills and love for the water and invited me to play on the youth team. What is your favorite part about playing? I love the family created by the water polo community and the competitiveness of the game. There is never a boring moment when you just play water polo. I also just love the water and the extra element it adds to the sport. What were the emotions like after last week’s game (a 7-6 win in which Hinds scored the deciding goal)? The whole team was just absolutely ecstatic. I personally have never been so overjoyed because we worked so hard to get to this point. It is the first time since 2009 that girls water polo has gotten first in league at MHS. Also, for us to win against Foothill Tech, our rivals for the past two years, made it that much better. What’s it been like to play for coach Hayden Goldberg? It’s been amazing because he has been my mentor since sixth grade when I first started playing and has supported me throughout my water polo career, even when I was playing club under another coach. He is the foundation of our team and I couldn’t appreciate him more. What are your hobbies outside of water polo? I really enjoy rock climbing and drawing, but I unfortunately rarely get to do those because almost all my time is committed to academics and training. What part of your game do you feel like you’ve improved most on this season? I personally feel that my defense has greatly improved along with my overall awareness of the ball and the other players in the game. What is your dream job? I am not exactly sure right now, but I do have an interest in the field of biology and veterinary studies so being a vet would be a job of interest for me. What’s the most challenging part of Suzy Demeter/22nd Century Media being a studentathlete? Probably balancing your schoolwork load with your training schedule in order to maintain your grades and physical fitness so you can perform well in games while also getting enough sleep. What are you most looking forward to after the season? I’m looking forward to getting back to my club water polo team and beginning to train for the Junior Olympics and the next high school season. Who are your favorite athletes? Probably [American water polo players] Merrill Moses, Maggie Steffens and Ashleigh Johnson. They are incredible athletes that showed me how to work hard no matter what. Interview by Freelance Reporter Ryan Flynn. Moving on up Heating up Malibu karate students earn red belts RIGHT: New red belt honorees from the local Malibu dojo of Warriors Heart Karate (front row, left to right) Lana King, Sandy Carr and Jade King gather for a photo with black belt judges (back row, left to right) fourth degree Jason Lieberman, seventh degree and two-time world champion stick fighter and instructor Master Dino Haynes, fourth degree Megan Miller and third degree Wayne Ribnick. The students were tested for Tang Soo Do, Doce Pares (stick fighting), Judo and kickboxing. Photo Submitted Juan Cabrillo cheer squad nabs first place at youth state championship Juan Cabrillo cheerleaders — (front row, left to right) Charlie Clark, Rhiley Shannon, Riley Hill, Azalea Filiepe and (back row, left to right) Emily Saavedra, Murial Buran, Grace Junger and Ella Marshall — gather for a photo after taking first place in the JAMZ school and youth state championship Feb. 4 in Pomona. The team is heading to nationals in Las Vegas on Feb. 17. Photo Submitted
malibusurfsidenews.com Sports Malibu surfside news | February 15, 2017 | 37 Pepperdine Athletics Waves’ baseball ranks third among WCC preseason polls The West Coast Conference released its preseason coaches poll Thursday, Feb. 9, and the Pepperdine baseball team was selected to finish third, receiving a pair of first-place votes and 63 points. Ryan Wilson was also selected as a member of the preseason allconference team. San Diego took the No. 1 spot (five first-place votes, 77 points) and Gonzaga took second (three first-place votes, 73 points). Wilson was one of five pitchers named to the All-WCC Preseason Team. The junior lefty is coming off a season in which he compiled a 0.63 ERA in 42.2 innings pitched. Splitting time between the bullpen and starting rotation, Wilson had six saves and a 2-0 record. He held opponents to a .128 batting average, striking out 46 while walking just 14. He is expected to start the season as Pepperdine’s Friday starter. The Waves finished last season 29-24 and 16-11 in WCC action, closing the regular season just two games out of first place. Pepperdine made it to a third straight WCC Tournament last year, falling in two extra-inning games to be eliminated. The Waves have made the NCAA Tournament three of the last five seasons. Pepperdine opens the 2017 season Feb. 17 at home against Saint Joseph’s. The Waves host the Hawks for a three-game series at Eddy D. Field Stadium on opening weekend. Waves record season-best defense in win over San Diego The women’s basketball team was propelled to a 57-40 win thanks to strong defense Saturday, Feb. 11, against San Diego. Yasmine Robinson-Bacote led the charge offensively, posting 14 points and 14 rebounds as the Waves move to 7-18 overall and 5-9 in WCC play. The win gave the Waves a season sweep of the Toreros for the first time since 2011. Even when San Diego did get inside, the Waves came away with eight blocks in the game, their second highest total of the season. The 40 points, 12 field goals and 19 percent shooting Pepperdine held the Toreros to were all season-bests for the Waves defensively. Robinson-Bacote’s doubledouble was her 10th of the season, making her the ninth Wave and first since 2001 to record 10 such stat lines in a single season. Allie Green added 11 points on the day and Sydney Bordonaro scored nine points on 3-of-6 shooting from three. The Waves shot 41.3 percent in the game and hit eight threes. Barnes, Wieczorek, Stewart shine in five-set matchup The men’s volleyball team split four sets, 25-23, 19-25, 25-21, 23-25, before falling to UCLA 15-7 in Malibu Saturday, Feb. 11. Senior setter Joshua Stewart amassed his fourth career doubledouble with 39 assists and 11 digs. He also added a career best .667 hitting percentage on a 4-0- 6 attack output and tabbed three blocks, including one solo. Senior Mitchell Penning amassed a career-best nine blocks, including one solo rejection, while adding three smashes. Redshirt-sophomore David Wieczorek led the squad with 15 kills on a .237 attack output, while adding eight digs and two blocks. Sophomore Michael Wexter produced 14 kills, eight digs and three blocks. Junior libero Weston Barnes led the team with 14 digs and a solid 29 service receptions with not a single error. Junior Alex Harthaller was good for a team-best three aces, along with four blocks and eight kills. Redshirt-junior Clay Carr added five kills and five blocks. Overall, the Waves (5-4, 3-3 MPSF) tabbed a .209 success rate with 51 kills on 139 swings. Earlier in the week, on Feb. 8, the Waves, aided by the playmaking efforts of Stewart, bested UC Santa Barbara in a four-set MPSF home match. After falling 25-23 in the first set, the Waves (5-3, 3-2 MPSF) battled back and rolled through the second set with a 25-12 win over the Gauchos (6- 6, 3-6 MPSF). The teams went point-for-point in the following two sets, but the home team prevailed with 34-32 and 31-29 set scores to clinch the victory. The Waves posted 58 kills with only nine errors on 127 attacks for a .386 success rate. Pepperdine added five aces, 46 digs and 11.5 team blocks, while allowing two aces, 53 digs and 5.0 team blocks to UCSB to earn the win. Overall there were 63 tie scores and 22 lead changes throughout the match, including 51 ties scores and 17 lead changes in the third and fourth sets combined. Stewart led with his third career double-double after dishing 50 assists and 11 digs, along with five blocks, an ace and a 2-0-5 attack output for a .400 percentage. Wieczorek was a member of the 20-kill club with 20 smashes on a .488 hitting percentage. He tabbed not a single error in 41 swings, while adding seven digs, a block, an ace and 22 successful service receptions. Penning had 14 kills and no errors on 23 attempts for a .609 attack output. He had seven blocks and added an ace. Barnes had 14 digs and 37 successful service receptions on a perfect 1.000 reception percentage. Wexter, Carr and freshman Dyer had nine, seven and six kills, respectively. Wexter added nine digs, two blocks and assists and an ace. Clay and Dyer produced three and five blocks, respectively. Waves compete at ITA National Team Indoor quarterfinals The women’s tennis team closed out the ITA National Team Indoor Championships with a 4-0 loss to 12th-ranked Texas Tech in the quarterfinal consolation in Connecticut. The Waves dropped the doubles point early, before falling on three courts in singles to end the day. In doubles, the fourth-ranked pair of senior Christine Maddox and junior Mayar Sherif defeated 23rd-ranked Tech duo Sabrina Federici and Sarah Dvorak, 6-4. The Waves’ two’s pair had fallen earlier in the day, putting all eyes on court three, where Pepperdine’s junior, sophomore duo Laura Gulbe and Dzina Milovanovic went 5-5 against the opposition, but eventually fell 5-7. With the 1-0 advantage heading into singles, Texas Tech picked up victories on courts one, four and five to end the day with the 4-0 overall win. On Saturday, Feb. 11, the team fell 4-1 to sixth-ranked Georgia in Connecticut. The Waves won the doubles point, but fell in four consecutive matches in singles to drop out of the main draw. Pepperdine played without the team’s No. 1 single and part of the No. 2 doubles pair, Luisa Stefani, as she is currently representing her home country Brazil at the Federal Cup in Mexico. Men’s tennis falls to Bears Men’s tennis was felled by California at Ralphs-Straus Tennis Center Sunday, Feb. 12, despite a strong doubles presence and two singles wins. Waves’ two’s pair Guilherme Hadlich and Gabriel Sidney were in the middle of a 6-6 tiebreak point with a 2-0 advantage against Andre Goransson and Bill Griffith before the match was abandoned due to the clinch. Stefan Menichella and Jack Van Slyke had a 4-1 advantage over third-ranked Cal pair Filip Bergevi and Florian Lakat, but the Bears eventually pulled away for a 7-5 victory. Junior duo Pedro Iamachkine and Lautaro Pane also played in doubles against Bjorn Hoffman and JT Nishimura, reaching a 6-6 tie-break point. The opposition clinched a 7-4 tie-break win. In singles, Van Slyke opened play with a two-set win over Bjorn Hoffman, earning a pair of 6-4 set wins to tie the match 1-1. The opposition put up a win on court one as 102nd-ranked Hadlich faced off with 12th-ranked Lakat, to have the Bears go up again. Dane Esses helped the Waves even the match with a court six win. He had a 1-6 loss in set one, to demand wins in the second and third sets, 6-2, 6-3 to make it a 2-2 overall match with courts two, three and four still in action. Tennis players earn WCC honors Guilherme Hadlich, Luisa Stefani, Christine Maddox and Mayar Sherif garnered the season’s first WCC Player and Doubles Team of the Week honors. For singles, Stefani picked up a win in the No. 1 slot for the third-ranked Waves matchup with top-ranked Florida on Feb. 4. Hadlich earned a one’s-spot victory to clinch the men’s win over Washington on Feb. 5. On the doubles side, Maddox and Sherif, a pair ranked third in the Oracle/ ITA doubles rankings, battled it out with Florida’s seventh-ranked pair in the No. 1 spot. This is the fourth consecutive season that the women’s side has swept the season-opening WCC weekly honors. Information from Pepperdine University and www. pepperdinewaves.com. Compiled by Editor Lauren Coughlin, lauren@ malibusurfsidenews.com.