April 30, 2005
DAVIS, Calif. - Senior center Sarah Rees drilled a seven-meter shot with 1:03 remaining in the first sudden-death overtime to lift UC Davis to a 7-6 win over UC San Diego in the first of two semifinals in the Western Water Polo Association women's championships at Schaal Aquatics Center Saturday.
The host Aggies will face Loyola Marymount in Sunday's championship game. The top-seeded Lions defeated fourth-seed Santa Clara by a 9-3 final in Saturday's second semifinal.
The UC Davis-UC San Diego battle featured six ties and six lead changes as neither team held more than a one-goal advantage at any point in the game. Senior Jenny Stephanopoulos scored three goals to lead the second-seeded Aggies while Tobi Lyman also paced the third-seeded Tritons with a hat trick.
Lyman put UCSD in strong position for a regulation win when she converted a 6-on-5 opportunity with 1:35 remaining in the fourth quarter, sending the Tritons to a 5-4 lead. It was the first score by either team in more than seven minutes of play, but Stephanopoulos tied the game with 33 seconds in a man-up situation.
Rees gave UC Davis a 6-5 lead when she connected on a goal at the 1:15 mark in the first overtime. UCSD again had an answer, as Lindsay Grossman collected a rebound from a fine Lina Moore save, and sent it through the low right corner as time expired in that fifth period.
After a scoreless sixth period, and two failed drives for each team in the first sudden-death period, Rees found herself with a look from the three position, just beyond the seven-meter marker. She deposited a hard line drive just beyond the reach of UCSD goalie Kaitlin Foe for the game-winner.
Rees finished the game with two goals, both in the extra frames. Courtney Clevenger provided UCSD with two goals, comprising a 6-on-5 attempt in the second period and a four-meter penalty shot in the third.
In contrast to the back-and-forth Aggie-Triton battle, LMU never trailed in its semifinal win over Santa Clara. Chritine Robinson scored four goals - including three in man-up opportunities - to help the Lions to a 7-0 start. SCU's Catherine Flynn scored two goals in a span of 30 seconds to cut the lead to 7-2 midway through the third and Lindsey Bacolini converted a 6-on-5 to trim the margin to 7-3. However, the Broncos never approached any closer. Robinson and Sarah Hamilton each scored two goals in the fourth, and LMU goalie Rachel Riddell posted four of her 11 saves in that frame to help close out the victory.
Cal St. Bakersfield and Sonoma State enjoyed the day's longest contest, with the Seawolves claiming a 10-9 win in the second sudden-death overtime. The Roadrunners took a 7-5 lead with 3:16 remaining in regulation when Katie Dacus scored the second of her three goals. However Amanda Haddock and Lauren Zambruski delivered back-to-back scores in the final minutes to tie the game at 7-7.
SSU junior Chelsea Hennan finished a 6-on-5 chance with 1:32 in the fifth to put her team up by a goal, but CSUB reclaimed the lead in the second overtime. Dacus completed her hat trick at 2:31 and Emma Keogh converted a four-meter penalty shot to send the Roadrunners to a 9-8 lead with 1:46 left.
Two possessions later, Seawolf sophomore Amanda Haddock scored on a penalty shot - her fourth goal of the day - to retie the game at 9-9 with 30 ticks remaining in the sixth period. Both teams deadlocked to a scoreless three minutes in the first sudden-death period, then sophomore driver Shelly Grout captured the win for SSU with a goal just 57 seconds into the second sudden-death frame.
Colorado State also posted a comeback win in Saturday's second game. Annie Quinn scored four goals and goalie Holly Stanfill posted a tournament-best 13 saves as the Rams recovered from a 3-1 deficit to take a 6-5 win over Cal St. East Bay. Ejections and four-meter violations proved costly for the Pioneers as CSU scored two goals on 6-on-5 chances and two more on penalty shots. Gabriella Keri led CSUEB with three goals in the losing effort.
Cal St. Monterey Bay opened the day's action with a 9-4 win over UC Santa Cruz, getting five goals from freshman hole setter Chelsea Laning and eight saves from goalie Mallory Carroll. Lindsay Stipling led the Banana Slugs with two goals.
Cal St. San Bernardino had the biggest winning margin of the tournament's second-day action, beating Chapman by a 10-2 final. Freyja Berg scored four goals for the Coyotes, while Tina Torres and Brandy Bray added two each.
Sunday's action begins with the 11th-place game between UC Santa Cruz and Cal St. East Bay and concludes with the 3 p.m. championship between UC Davis and Loyola Marymount. The winner of the WWPA tournament earns an automatic berth in the NCAA's National Collegiate Championships in Ann Arbor, Mich.
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