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North Penn sweeps doubleheader with rival Souderton

North Penn goalie Danny Dunigan mans the net during the match with Souderton Area on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2022. Dunigan had eight saves in the win. (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group)

TOWAMENCIN >> On Tuesday night, the North Penn boys water polo team painted a vivid picture of how it spent its summer vacation.

Having played at Junior Olympics out in California over the break, the Knights come into this season very much a unified group, and that bond is showing in the water.

“We did spring league and summer league, went out to California — good experience. We’ve been playing together the last few years,” the Knights’ Aidan Faikish said after the Suburban One League battle with rival Souderton. “Last year, we only graduated two seniors. And we’re all good friends so the chemistry’s great. The vibes are good.”

North Penn’s Colin Harkrader passes over the Souderton defense during their match on Sept. 13, 2022 (Kev Hunter, MediaNews Group).

After a solid showing at the Jumpstart Tournament out at Wilson, the Knights hit the bulk of their league schedule at full stride.

North Penn jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the opening minutes, led 8-1 after one quarter, and went on to an impressive 19-9 win over Big Red to complete a sweep of the evening doubleheader. The NP girls prevailed 12-6 early in the night.

“The boys are starting to come into their own. We had a good summer – traveled to Junior Olympics in California – so we’ve had a lot of games,” NP coach Jason Grubb said. “We’re starting in a decent spot.

“We started a couple games slow this year. We definitely have been working on coming out with a little more punch, a little more teeth.”

North Penn’s Aidan Faikish played an all-around game to lead the Knights past Souderton on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 2022 (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group).

Nathan Rawa poured in six goals and had an assist and four steals.

Faikish scored four times, assisted on two other goals, had four steals and added a blocked shot.

“We wanted to pick the pace up,” Faikish said. “I like the way we started.”

North Penn’s Zoe Welsh made 15 saves in the win over Souderton. (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group).

Andrew Davis (hat trick) and Breyden Kemezis (two goals) were also key weapons for the high-powered Knights, who got added contributions and a goal each from Mason Dimauro, Lance Engel, Owen Fritz and Danny Mitchell.

Big Red made a push in the second half but the Knights remained in control.

The North Penn girls also got out to a hot start.

The offense produced seven first-quarter goals. Balance was key for the attack.

Souderton coach Daniel Fleck talks to his squad after its match with North Penn (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group).

Many hands were at work, as Emma Raser and Anna Evans each notched hat tricks.

“The girls are coming around. We had two early losses this year against Wilson, and they’ve been working hard to rectify the issues they’ve been having in the last few games,” said Grubb.

Holding off Big Red, North Penn pushed to a 9-3 lead by the intermission.

North Penn watches the action during its match with Souderton (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group).

Fiona Rowe and Marin Clark each scored twice, and Brenna Mancini and Charlie Shaw added a goal.

Said Grubb: “We’re pretty strong this year. There’s a lot of good senior leadership, a lot of strong, quick kids. So they’re definitely making a push right now.”

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