No. 18 Broncos Snipe 11-10 Win From Aggies

Hannah Curran scored three goals to lead UC Davis offensively.
(Wayne Tilcock, Davis Enterprise)

April 19, 2014

DAVIS, Calif. - Kaitlin Murphy's backhanded goal with 1:24 left in the fourth ended a run of four unanswered Bronco goals as 17th-ranked UC Davis dropped an 11-10 non-conference game to No. 18 Santa Clara in collegiate women's water polo action at Schaal Aquatics Center Saturday afternoon.

The Aggies slip to 12-17 for the year. The Broncos improve to 15-11.

Senior center Hannah Curran led UC Davis with three goals while junior Keelia Houston added two. Sammi Murphy, Paige Oreglia, Alex Rawlinson, Bryn Lutz and Katrina Husted each netted one to round out the offensive totals while junior Jillian Wilding posted nine saves in front of the Aggie cage.

Kaitlin Murphy's goal marked the fourth lead change of the contest. The Broncos jumped out to a 2-0 start in the first five minutes of play, but Houston scored on a power play and a five-meter penalty to equalize within a minute later. Then Oreglia, who assisted Houston's 6-on-5 goal, put UC Davis up by one with her counterattack score at the 1:42 mark in the first.

Sammi Murphy's power-play goal in the final minute of the first quarter and Curran's shot from the 1 spot early in the second gave the Aggies a 5-3 edge, but Murphy scored two in a run of three straight to reclaim the advantage at 6-5. UC Davis battled back to a pair of ties before taking an 8-7 lead with just seven ticks left on the halftime clock. An Elsie Fullerton steal led to an Ariel Arcidiacono-to-Curran connection on the opposite end.



UC Davis extended its lead to 10-7 with goals by Husted and Curran in the first 75 seconds of the third quarter, but that proved to be the last of the Aggie offense. Erin Sheridan and Julia Peters scored in the third to cut the margin to 10-9 heading into the fourth. Both teams engaged in a back-and-forth battle with no scoring for three full minutes down the stretch.

The Aggie reserves held down the fort for the first four minutes of the final frame, allowing the starters to rest after a frantic finish to the fourth. With four minutes left, UC Davis called a timeout to restore its original starting lineup of Fullerton, Houston, Arcidiacono, Curran, Husted and Allyson Hansen.

However, Julia Peters hit the equalizer from the five spot with 2:30 left and Kaitlin Murphy scored the go-ahead a minute later to complete the Bronco comeback. UC Davis managed one last 6-on-5 chance but Santa Clara defended for the full 20 seconds. Senior goalkeeper June Afshar posted a save with about 25 seconds left, and the Broncos managed the clock the rest of the way.

Saturday's game marked the Aggies' first-ever loss to Santa Clara in 32 meetings, a stretch that included a close 8-7 UC Davis victory earlier this year. It also served as Senior Day, honoring the graduating class of Oreglia, Husted, Alex Rawlinson, Curran and Erin Schlueter.

The Aggies head to the Big West Conference Championships, hosted by Long Beach State from April 25-27.

#18 Santa Clara (15-11) 3 4 2 2 - 11
#17 UC Davis (12-17) 4 4 2 0 - 10

GOALS - SCU: Kaitlin Murphy 3, Elle Surber 2, Julia Peters 2, Laura Burtness 1, Erin Sheridan 1, Elizabeth Anderson 1, Claire Eadington 1. UC Davis: Hannah Curran 3, Keelia Houston 2, Sammi Murphy 1, Paige Oreglia 1, Alex Rawlinson 1, Bryn Lutz 1, Katrina Husted 1.

GOALIE SAVES - SCU: June Afshar 4 (32:00). UC Davis: Jillian Wilding 9 (32:00).