At the final whistle, there were no wild celebrations or exuberant back-slapping, just a sense of relief over a mission accomplished.
Water-polo powerhouses Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) reclaimed their boys' B Division title on Tuesday at the Physical and Sports Education Branch pool at Evans Road with a 13-7 victory over Outram Secondary School, in a rematch of last year's final.
Then, Outram edged out ACS(I) 6-5 to claim their first-ever B Division water polo title.
ACS(I) captain Eythan Ang said: "After we lost the title last year, we were really very motivated to get it back this year.
"We beat them (Outram) narrowly, 7-6, in the preliminary round, but we weren't in the groove back then. We were definitely in the groove today."
The ACSians grabbed the final by the horns, finishing the first quarter 4-1 up, thanks to a hat-trick by Daniel Tan.
It was a lead that they held throughout, with Efren Tan claiming five goals.
The ACSians' disciplined defence, along with their strong swimming on the counter-attack, were also major factors.
However, the final could have been a closer affair had the defending champions not hit the post thrice in the first period.
Outram captain Nicholas Yeo said: "We didn't convert our chances, especially in the first quarter, and we didn't pass well today either."
Eythan agreed, saying: "The first quarter was very important. It set the mood for us and we were really focused on doing well in that period to take the lead."
The ACSians continued to pour forward even in the dying minutes, despite holding a comfortable lead and with their supporters urging them to run down the clock.
Eythan smiled and said: "We will never relax completely."
BOYS’ B DIVISION WATER POLO FINAL
Anglo-Chinese School (Independent) 13 - 7 Outram Secondary School
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