The Saline girls water polo team advanced to the district championship before falling to Skyline.
The finals finish gives Saline and advantageous seeding at this weekend’s regional tournament at Skyline, where the Hornets need to win on opening night to clinch a spot in the state tournament.
Saline opened the tournament by defeating Walled Lake, 20-0, Friday night. On Saturday morning, Saline defeated Pioneer, 6-3, to advance to the championship game against Skyline.
Skyline and Saline had played twice this season. Skyline defeated Saline, 7-5, at Saline. On May 1, at Skyline, Saline won 4-2.
On Saturday afternoon, the Hornets struggled to penetrate the Skyline defense, and Skyline won, 6-1.
“We’re two good, pretty evenly matched teams. Today, they were just better than us,” said Saline head coach Nate Barnett.
The loss snapped a seven-game win streak for the Hornets, who are 12-7.
While the Hornets would have preferred a number one seed and a district trophy, reaching the championship game was a victory in its own right.
To advance to the state championship tournament, Saline must win its first game of the regional tournament. Because they made the finals, they go in as a two seed and they’ll play the Holt-East Lansing team, instead of a powerhouse from Okemos.
“This team didn’t get to the state tournament last season and our girls want to go. For our seniors, that would mean they’ve gone three out of the four years of their career, and that’s important to them,” Barnett said.