Trojans win three more
USC water polo players played three matches at home this week. On Thursday, March 23, they hosted No.10 Princeton Tigers, who previously defeated No.16 Long Beach State (7-2). Princeton, however, had no chance against current No.1 USC who proved too strong and won 12-3. After scoring six unanswered goals during the first quarter, they continued to increase their lead and had a nine-goal advantage at halftime (10-1). In the second half, the Trojans took their foot off the gas to save their energy for the two upcoming games on March 25. The game’s top scorer was Maud Megens who netted five goals.
USC triumphed in the MPSF face-off over No.14 San Jose State, 19-3, to record their 50th consecutive victory. Their opponent on Friday also did not manage to score more than three goals. Led by Brigitta Games who scored seven goals, USC easily rolled past their rival, 19-3. Stephania Haralabidis found the net four times. They achieved a three-goal advantage in the first period and then netted six goals in both the second and the third quarter. The Spartans were left scoreless in the second half, unable to resist the Trojans’ impeccable performance. The victory over San Jose State was USC’s second MPSF win.
Later that day, the Trojans beat No.18 Hartwick as well. Top scorers were again Games with four, as well as Haralabidis and Megens with three goals. Stephania Haralabidis became the second USC’s all-time scorer. At the beginning of the nonconference matchup with Hartwick, the audience saw several draws. USC scored the opening goal, but the Hawks quickly equalized. Another lead brought to USC by Hayley McKelvey was also not unanswered. However, the Trojans stepped up their defense and ended the first quarter with three-goal advantage (6-3). Faultless USC then completely took over the game and triumphed 21-5.
USC vs. Princeton 12-3 (6-0, 4-1, 1-0, 1-2)
USC vs. San Jose State 19-3 (4-1, 6-2, 6-0, 3-0)
USC vs. Hartwick 21-5 (6-3, 8-2, 3-0, 4-0)
USC Trojans remained top-ranked, followed by Stanford, UCLA, Cal and Irvine. They will host a MPSF match against Arizona State on April 1.
Easy job for Stanford against CSU Bakersfield
Cardinal water polo players were dominant on Saturday netting seven unanswered goals during the first quarter to leave no doubt about the winner. Kristen Jensen scored the first goal for the visiting squad around three minutes before the halftime. The second and the last goal for CSU Bakersfield was netted by Ashley Paz at the middle of the third quarter. Unfortunately, the match against the Cardinal was too much for them. Stanford’s Maggie Steffens was the top scorer with her career-high seven goals.
Stanford vs. CSU Bakersfield 19-2 (7-0, 4-1, 6-1, 2-0)
No.2 Stanford water polo players will play an away match against No.4 Cal Bruins on April 2.
Cal Bears bested by Arizona State
The close contest between No.4 Cal and No.6 Arizona State ended with the Bears’ loss. ASU scored the first goal of the game, but Emma Wright and Carla Carrega scored to bring the first lead to Cal, which did not last long. The result was tied at the end of the first quarter (2-2). The visiting water polo players had their hopes high after scoring two consecutive goals in the second quarter and going on a break with one-goal advantage (4-3). They even increased their lead to two at the beginning of the third period, but the Bears made a comeback, and the result was tied before the last period of the game. Genevieve Weed opened the last quarter with her only goal, but the Bears blew this advantage. ASU overcame the deficit and won thanks to Maud Koopman.
Cal vs. Arizona State 6-7 (2-2, 1-2, 2-1, 1-2)
No.3 Cal Bruins will host No.2 Stanford on April 2.
Weekend off for UCLA
After the break, the Bruins will travel to Honolulu to play at the Hawai’i Invitational which will be held March 30-April 1. They will face No.12 San Diego State, No.8 Hawai’i, and No.12 UC Santa Barbara.
Photo source: KLC Fotos