Naperville Central and Barrington are two of the top squads in the state, and Barrington had some answers to what Naperville Central put up Thursday, but the Redhawks stayed a couple of steps ahead and won their boys water polo match 16-8 in Naperville.
The Redhawks improved to 17-1, and with the regular-season schedule winding down, coach Bill Salentine said he likes how his team is looking.
"I think we're a top-eight state team, but there's Naperville North and we'll have to get past them to get out of sectionals," he said. "We face Stevenson this weekend. We lost to them 7-6 early in the season."
Naperville Central will face highly regarded Stevenson over two consecutive weekends; the Redhawks travel to the Stevenson Tournament the last weekend of April.
The Broncos (18-2) jumped out quickly Thursday as John Fischer scored 3 of his game-high 5 goals to put Barrington ahead 3-0. The Redhawks put their game into drive late in the period when goals from Luke Klein-Collins and Bender Russo tied the game at 3.
Three unanswered scores from Nolan Vaughn, Matt Reagan and Dominic May gave Naperville Central a 6-3 halftime lead, and the Redhawks broke open the game with 7 goals in the third period.
Klein-Collins, a sophomore, and Vaughn, a senior, each led Naperville Central with 3 goals. Reagan, May and Lucas Nervig and each connected for 2 goals. Besides Russo, Michael Stern, Phillip Sajaev and goalkeeper Kent Emden also scored once. Emden, the winning goalie, scored at the buzzer on a net to net shot.
"Barrington is very fast. In the first quarter we struggled. Once we collected ourselves, we came out and played well," Klein-Collins said.
For the Broncos, Mitch Gavors scored 3 goals to add up Barrington's final total.
"John (Fischer) and Mitch are big tough guys, smart four-year players," said Broncos coach Rob Emary.
Emary also praised the play of goalie Jack Krieps along with Kyle Mitchell and Steve Fischer.
Emary said Thursday's game starts the most difficult portion of the schedule for Barrington.
"We still face York, Niles West, Mundelein. It will be a tough two weeks," he said.
Barrington is at the Niles West Tournament on Saturday, which takes place at Niles North. Emary expects the Broncos to be the top seed of the Hoffman Estates sectional.