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Otter win thriller on penalties to claim national age group title

Otter held their nerve in a penalty shootout against City of Liverpool to win the Swim England Water Polo National Age Group Championships U15s girls title.

A dramatic final saw City of Liverpool take the tie to penalties after equalising with 60 seconds to go after coming from 6-3 down.

In a thrilling end-to-end encounter, City of Liverpool led 2-1 before Otter went 3-2 ahead.

The sides were deadlocked at 3-3 at the interval before Otter stormed into a 6-3 advantage.

However, City of Liverpool’s Hannah Pyper scored a wonderful goal from almost halfway to pull one back and spark a resurgence.

Pyper then made it 6-5 and then Liverpool were awarded a penalty with a minute on the clock which Lucy Robb converted.

That took the tie to penalties and both sides scored their first before Liverpool missed their second to give Otter the advantage.

However, Juliet Lyons hit the bar for Otter and Amelie Cornell scored to level the tie again.

Milly seals win

Madeline Roberts made it 9-8 to Otter and when Lucy White had her penalty saved, Milly McDonagh had the opportunity to win it.

And she made no mistake to secure the gold medal for Otter.

Nick Buller, Otter head coach, said: “We are delighted with the win.

“We had challenging matches in the group stages and a really hard semi-final and Liverpool did brilliantly to fight back and take the game to penalties.

“We would like to thank the organisers and all the volunteers who made it such a well run and enjoyable event.”

Both sides had booked their place in the final after winning all four of their group matches and their semi-final clashes.

Otter topped Group A following victories over Watford WPC (10-2), Kirkintilloch (12-5), City of Sheffield (7-4) and Nova Centurion (18-1).

City of Liverpool, meanwhile, had a goal difference of plus 62 after defeating Iceni WPC (22-2), City of Manchester (10-6), City of Birmingham (17-2) and Sedgefield (26-3).

Otter defeated City of Manchester 10-6 in their last four clash, while City of Liverpool triumphed 9-7 against City of Sheffield.

That left City of Sheffield and City of Manchester to contest the bronze medal match after their semi-final defeat.

And it was City of Sheffield who came out on top, triumphing 14-6 to take third place.

Otter’s Juliet Lyons was named the most valuable player, Iceni’s Natasha Payne was top scorer with 33, while City of Liverpool’s Hannah Giles was top goalkeeper.

Picture: Will Johnston Photography

Fixtures
Nova Centurion3 – 20City of SheffieldFT
Iceni WPC11 – 1Sedgefield WPFT
Otter10 – 2Watford WPCFT
City of Manchester14 – 4City of BirminghamFT
Nova Centurion3 – 9KirkintillochFT
Iceni WPC2 – 22City of LiverpoolFT
City of Sheffield8 – 6Watford WPCFT
Sedgefield WP4 – 12City of BirminghamFT
Otter12 – 5KirkintillochFT
City of Manchester6 – 10City of LiverpoolFT
Nova Centurion0 – 19Watford WPCFT
Iceni WPC7 – 11City of BirminghamFT
Otter7 – 4City of SheffieldFT
City of Manchester19 – 3Sedgefield WPFT
Watford WPC7 – 4KirkintillochFT
City of Birmingham2 – 17City of LiverpoolFT
Nova Centurion1 – 18OtterFT
Iceni WPC8 – 23City of ManchesterFT
City of Sheffield10 – 3KirkintillochFT
Sedgefield WP3 – 26City of LiverpoolFT
Group A
TeamPWDLGDPts
Otter4400358
City of Sheffield4301236
Watford WPC4202124
Kirkintilloch4103-112
Nova Centurion4004-590
Group B
TeamPWDLGDPts
City of Liverpool4400628
City of Manchester4301376
City of Birmingham4202-134
Iceni WPC4103-292
Sedgefield WP4004-570
9-10 Playoff
Nova Centurion1313 – 33SedgefieldFT
5-8 Playoffs
Watford WPC1616 – 55Iceni WPCFT
City Of Birmingham44 – 1010KirkintillochFT
Semi-Finals
Otter1010 – 66City Of ManchesterFT
City Of Liverpool99 – 77City Of SheffieldFT
7-8 Playoff
City Of Birmingham99 – 77Iceni WPCFT
5-6 Playoff
Kirkintilloch66 – 99Watford WPCFT
Bronze Medal Match
City Of Sheffield1414 – 66City Of ManchesterFT
Final
City Of Liverpool88 – 1010OtterFT
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