Water Polo Jumps To No. 11 In National Poll

Sept. 22, 2010

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AGGIE SHOOTOUT (Davis, Calif.)
Saturday, Sept. 25 - UC Davis vs. Santa Clara, 9 a.m.
Saturday, Sept. 25 - California vs. Redlands, 10:15 a.m.
Saturday, Sept. 25 - California vs. American River, 11:30 a.m.
Saturday, Sept. 25 - Santa Clara vs. Redlands, 3 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 25 - UC Davis vs. California, 4:15 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 25 - UC Davis vs. American River, 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 26 - UC Davis vs. Redlands, 10 a.m.

Note: the first team listed will wear dark caps. Games involving American River College are exhibition only.

Saturday, Sept. 18 - vs. Stanford (L, 5-13)
Saturday, Sept. 18 - vs. UC San Diego (W, 10-6)
Sunday, Sept. 19 - vs. Long Beach State (L, 4-7)
Sunday, Sept. 19 - vs. Santa Clara (W, 7-4)
Monday, Sept. 20 - AIR FORCE (W, 7-4)

TO RECAP: UC Davis went 2-2 at the prestigious NorCal Invitational, posting wins vs. No. 11 UC San Diego and No. 18 Santa Clara; then delivered a 7-4 victory in its home opener against Air Force on Monday... The weekend pushed the team up four spots to No. 11 in the Sept. 22 national poll... Perhaps more importantly, the Aggies (9-3) remain undefeated in eight contests against members of the Western Water Polo Association... In fact, the only losses on UC Davis' slate thus far have been at the hands of top-10 teams: No. 1 California, No. 4 Stanford and No. 10 Long Beach State... Junior Aaron Salit and sophomore Colin Hicks were the team's top scorers for the weekend... Salit had back-to-back hat tricks against Santa Clara and Air Force after claiming WWPA Player of the Week honors... Hicks scored two goals each vs. Santa Clara and Stanford, with a three-goal performance vs. UC San Diego.

UP NEXT: UC Davis hosts the Aggie Shootout, which is essentially a one-day mini-tournament plus a Sunday road contest with Redlands... Cal, Santa Clara and American River also round out the field... ARC, participating as an exhibition opponent, will likely face the `B' squads... The Aggies face SCU in Saturday's opener at 9 a.m., then rematch with No. 1 Cal in the 4:15 p.m. contest... UC Davis will then take on WWPA foe Redlands for a second time on Sunday morning.

No. 3 CALIFORNIA (5-1) finished third at its own NorCal Invitational over the weekend, falling in a 12-11 heartbreaker to USC before taking down Stanford in Sunday's nightcap... Junior GK Wil Toppen posted 20 saves in three halves during Sunday's action... Ivan Rackov totaled eight goals in Saturday's wins over Pepperdine and Pomona-Pitzer... No. 15 SANTA CLARA (5-5) tallied a victory over Navy in the NorCal Invite before dropping a pair of battles with WWPA rivals Loyola Marymount (8-6) and UC Davis (7-4)... Senior defender Mitch Klipa tallied a hat trick in Saturday's win over the Mids... REDLANDS (5-4) has been idle since winning four of five at its own Inland Empire Classic... The lone loss in the tournament: a 13-7 setback to the Aggies... The Bulldogs held the top spot on the national Div. III poll for two weeks before slipping behind Pomona-Pitzer on Sept. 22.

"We took another step forward. The team concept of our five-man defense has started to roll over into our halfcourt defense. I think we saw that against Air Force with only four goals [allowed], although we did make what I call `blow-up' mistakes. We can't do that. If we execute well and they make a shot, that's fine. But as I told the team, we can't be the best player on their team. We can't do things that give them an easy goal."

"I expect Redlands and Santa Clara to be better, and I expect us to be better against Cal. That's the goal -- to get better every game. We need our depth. Anders MacCarthy has stepped up phenomenally. We need other guys to do the same. Matt Vowell and Hank Dickey are examples. We need them to go to the next level. Last week, I didn't know who my starting six was. So it was who would fight for that sixth spot. Anders went out there and claimed it. I was really impressed by his play, and I need other guys to step in and do the same thing at filling those roles. I think Matt, Hank and Teddy Nicholson can do that. Kevin Meisel and Michael Millstein can help us. My goal for the weekend is to improve our depth because you never know when injuries come up and foul trouble happens."