Water Polo Prepares For Tough SoCal Weekend

Sept. 29, 2009

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Friday, Oct. 2 - at UC San Diego, 6 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 3 - at Loyola Marymount, 1 p.m.

at Bronco Invitational (Santa Clara, Calif.)
Saturday, Sept. 26 - vs. Cal Lutheran (W, 12-3)
Saturday, Sept. 26 - vs. Redlands (W, 8-6)
Sunday, Sept. 27 - vs. Whittier (W, 8-3)
Sunday, Sept. 27 - at Santa Clara (W, 8-7)

LOOKING BACK: UC Davis (9-4, 8-2) took down four straight Western Water Polo Association games at the Bronco Invitational, including an 8-6 win over Redlands (previously a `Receiving Votes' team) and an 8-7 comeback victory against 10th-ranked Santa Clara... Sunday's nightcap marked the second time UC Davis prevailed over a higher-ranked team... In both cases the opponent was No. 10... T then-No. 18 Aggies beat Pacific at the NorCal Invite on September 19... This time, UC Davis was No. 15 in the national poll...

Freshman Colin Hicks converted a 6-on-5 chance midway through the fourth period to complete a 3-0 run against the Broncos... UC Davis had led 3-1 early on and 4-3 at the half, but fell behind by a 7-5 margin in the fourth... Juniors Cory Lyle and Matt Richardson each scored to tie the contest at 7-7 before Hicks hit the game-winner... Three Aggies performed their first hat tricks of the year during the Bronco: Russell Hampton scored four against Cal Lutheran, Jared Clapham had three vs. CLU and senior Jim Breen posted a hat trick in Saturday's win against Redlands... Hampton enjoyed a strong overall weekend, shooting 6-for-8 with four assists in three games... Clapham went 5-for-6 with four steals, playing in all four contests... Sophomore Ryan Hagens, who had sat out the NorCal Invite due to injury, returned to action to post two goals, two drawn exclusions and a team-best eight steals.

UP NEXT: The Aggies continue WWPA competition, taking on the two highest-ranked teams in the conference, No. 13 UC San Diego on Friday, No. 5 Loyola Marymount on Saturday... Note: Friday evening's game against the Tritons has been relocated to La Jolla High School's Coggan Family Aquatic Complex to the temporary closure of UCSD's Canyonview Aquatics Center... Coggan is located at 800 Nautilus Street, adjacent to the high school.

UC SAN DIEGO (5-7), which started the season at No. 10 in the national coaches' poll, lost a 7-4 WWPA battle to Loyola Marymount on Thursday... Freshman utility Brian Donohoe scored two goals for the Tritons, bumping his team-leading season total to 29... UCSD previously beat UC Davis, 10-7, in the 11th-place game at the NorCal Invitational on September 20.

LOYOLA MARYMOUNT (9-2) followed its Thursday victory over UC San Diego with a 9-5 win against No. 9 Long Beach State on Saturday... Junior driver Andrew Aki scored three goals while Andrew MacDonell and Edgaras Asajavicius each had two... The Lions have won 22 straight contests against WWPA teams, a streak dating back to an 8-7 overtime loss to Santa Clara October 26, 2007... UC Davis had prevailed in the previous game, beating LMU in a 7-5 clash on October 20.

"This was my kind of tournament, and it's not just because we went 4-0. We got better in every game throughout the weekend. In addition, I got to see the improvement from playing Redlands and Santa Clara two weeks ago. The Santa Clara win was a total team effort. The guys' effort and intensity in helping their teammates wasn't there two weeks ago. So I was happy, from that standpoint, to see them work as a team."

"Our main goals for the weekend were to not give up counterattacks, to not get kicked out on counterattacks and, most important, to not make boneheaded turnovers that lead to easy goals. I thought we accomplished those three things. On the offensive end, I wanted to push the counterattack or get early offense. In other words, don't get out there and just sit. Early offense doesn't necessarily mean early goals, it could mean getting 6-on-5s then scoring on those 6-on-5s. I thought we were better in those areas. UC San Diego and LMU swim very well, so if we can keep doing those things, we can play with those teams."