RAFFLES Institution clinched their ninth straight A Division girls' water polo title yesterday, thumping Temasek Junior College 8-2 at the Co-Curricular Activities Branch swimming complex.
Storming to a 4-1 lead at half-time through goals from Madeline Ong (two), Chan Fang Yi and captain Richelle Ang, RI continued their rich vein of scoring form after the break, with more goals from Madeline, Richelle and Rachel Lee adding gloss to the result.
Richelle was pleased her team delivered amid the high expectations placed on them to continue the school's winning streak. She said: "I think we did a good job and put up an excellent fight. As our coach taught us, we focused on one goal at a time and thus were able to pull ourselves together even when we felt frustrated."
The last time the two teams met, in the preliminary round, RI emerged 16-5 victors.
Yesterday, though, the contest was much tighter than the scoreline suggested, with RI being denied on several occasions by an inspired performance from TJC goalkeeper Emelia Tan.
While disappointed that she could not keep the scoreline down, Emelia said: "I was a late addition to the team and I'm glad I was able to help the team meet our target of making the final."
Despite the humbling defeat, TJC coach and teacher-in-charge Marcus Goh said he is proud of his charges. "This team have nothing to be ashamed of considering some of them have only six months' experience playing the sport," he explained. "There will always be a winner and a loser. But what is more important to me than the result is the perseverance and strong fighting spirit the girls have displayed."