Exeter knocked out defending champions Solihull in a thrilling final group match to complete the line-up for the 2015 ASA National Age Group Water Polo Championships Boys’ U19 Finals.
Having drawn against Lancaster 7-7 in their opening match, the South West side came into the game knowing a draw or win against Solihull – who had lost to Lancaster – would be enough to see them through.
Kameron Powell bagged a first quarter hat-trick as they raced into a 6-2 lead before Solihull pegged them back to 7-5 at the half-way stage.
But Exeter refound their scoring form in the third and fourth quarters, maintaining their lead against a determined Solihull side to secure a 16-12 win.
While the top two in Group B finished on the same number of points, eight-time champions Lancaster went through as group winners, courtesy of their greater goal difference against third-placed Solihull, while City of Manchester B were fourth.
There was also a tie at the top of Group A as City of Manchester A and Croydon Amphibians defeated Watford and Cheltenham then drew with each other 7-7 in the last game of the day.
Croydon – who remain unbeaten in this season’s Championships after five wins in the Prelims – will aim to improve on their fourth place from last year, having boosted their squad with a number of 2014’s U17 title-winning side.
The London side finished top of the group, having scored more goals against third-placed Watford than last year’s runners-up City of Manchester.
- Click here for simplified match sheets from the Boys’ U19 Qualifiers.
Boys U19 Qualifiers
|City of Manchester A||11 – 8||Watford||FT|
|Croydon Amphibians||15 – 3||Cheltenham||FT|
|City of Manchester A||23 – 5||Cheltenham||FT|
|Croydon Amphibians||13 – 10||Watford||FT|
|Watford||18 – 3||Cheltenham||FT|
|City of Manchester A||7 – 7||Croydon Amphibians||FT|
|City of Manchester A||3||2||1||0||21||5|
Boys U19 Qualifiers
|Exeter||7 – 7||Lancaster||FT|
|Solihull||20 – 6||City of Manchester B||FT|
|Exeter||16 – 5||City of Manchester B||FT|
|Solihull||6 – 11||Lancaster||FT|
|Lancaster||16 – 4||City of Manchester B||FT|
|Solihull||12 – 16||Exeter||FT|
|City of Manchester B||3||0||0||3||-37||0|