May. 1, 2005
DAVIS, Calif. - Senior driver Jessica Conner scored four goals and sophomore goalie Rachel Riddell posted a tournament-best 14 saves in net to lead sixth-ranked Loyola Marymount to an 8-4 win over UC Davis in the title game of the 2004 Western Water Polo Association women's championships at Schaal Aquatics Center Sunday. With the win, the Lions captured their fifth consecutive conference title and earn the association's automatic-qualifying berth to the National Collegiate Championships later this month.
The 14th-ranked Aggies finish the season at 20-17, posting the program's seventh straight season of 20 or more wins. Head coach Jamey Wright was voted as Coach of the Year by his conference peers.
Riddell was named as the conference's Player of the Year. She was one of three LMU players on the All-WWPA first team, along with junior Stacia Peterson and sophomore Katie Hicks. Senior Sarah Rees and sophomore Cassie Schaefer represented the host Aggies on the all-association first team. Santa Clara's Catherine Flynn and UC San Diego's Tobi Lyman rounded out the conference's top squad.
Conner's scoring helped LMU pull away from an early 1-1 tie in the tournament finale, hitting 6-on-5 goals in each of the first two quarters. Hicks and freshman Rosanna Tomiuk also scored in a 3-1 Lion second quarter, allowing their team take a 4-2 halftime edge.
UC Davis senior Nicole Lorrimer helped close the gap early in the third quarter when she drew an exclusion of Tomiuk then scored the ensuing man-up goal. However, Peterson put LMU's lead back to two goals when she scored a 6-on-5 of her own just 20 seconds later. The Lions converted successfully on their first three advantage situations.
Lorrimer struck again with 3:05 remaining in the third, hitting a strong-side lob just as LMU was retunring to even strength. Again, the Lions had an answer -- this time a skip-shot goal by Sarah Hamilton from the five position at the 2:34 mark. The Lions dominated the fourth quarter, getting two more goals from Conner and six saves by Riddell to help lock up the conference title.
UC San Diego scored on five of six 6-on-5 opporunities to take a 10-7 win over Santa Clara in the tournament's third-place game. Jessica Wong led the Tritons with three goals, while Sarah Bajorek and Michelle Perkins added two each. Goalie Kaitlin Foe, a Davis High product who garnered second-team All-WWPA honors, finished that game with nine saves in the UCSD cage. For the Broncos, Alannah Simpkins, Catherine Flynn and Andrea Evans each tallied two goals.
In the fifth-place contest, Amanda Haddock scored four total goals - including two on four-meter penalty shots - as Sonoma State protected an early 5-1 lead en route to a 9-6 win over Cal St. San Bernardino. Chelsea Hennan chipped in two goals for the Seawolves while junior Bridget Berg matched that total for the Coyotes. SSU goalie Kimberly Fortson posted 14 saves in net, matching Riddell's championship-game effort for the tournament's highest total.
Jamie Baker and Katie Dacus each scored four goals to lead Cal St. Bakersfield to a 12-5 win over Chapman in the tourney's seventh-place game. Each player completed hat tricks before the halftime break to give the Roadrunners a 7-1 margin. Then they were two of four CSUB scorers in the fourth quarter. Chapman got two goals each from Kristina Eich and Kristin Carter, but struggled to score against Roadrunner goalie Amber Brenner in the second half. Brenner had six saves in 14 minutes of play in front of the CSUB net.
Two first-year programs battled in the ninth-place game, with Colorado State claiming a 6-1 victory over Cal St. Monterey Bay. Annie Quinn had three goals for the Rams while Laurien White added two more. Kelli Lyons scored the Otters' lone goal on a 6-on-5 advantage in the first quarter. Holly Stanfill and Andrea Lugo combined for eight saves in Colorado State's cage.
The WWPA Championships opened with Cal St. East Bay edging UC Santa Cruz in a 5-3 defensive battle. Lizzy Ryan and Carrie Guilfoyle each scored early goals to give the Banana Slugs a 2-0 lead in the opening minutes, but East Bay's Gabriella Keri and Elaine Mashburn helped tie the game at 2-2 entering the second quarter. Mashburn scored her second goal with 4:09 in the second, then UCSC's Ranae Logdson equalized it with 1:45 left in the half. However, that was the last of the Banana Slug offense. Pioneer goalie Kim Johnson posted five of her nine saves after the break to help her team's two-goal output result in the win.
UC Davis and UC San Diego each claimed two members of the All-WWPA second team. Foe and Clevenger earned such honors for the Tritons while freshman Christi Raycraft and sophomore Katherine O'Rourke earned nods for the Aggies. LMU's Robinson, Sonoma's Haddock and Cal St. Bakersfield's Emma Keogh also made the second team.
All-WWPA honorable mention went to Lindsay Grossman of UC San Diego, Katie Radvanyi of Santa Clara, Sasha Versage of Sonoma State, Tina Torres of Cal St. San Bernardino, Marisa Fernandez of Colorado State, Chelsea Laning of Cal St. Monterey Bay and Lorrimer of UC Davis.
The 2005 National Collegiate Championships take place on May 13-15 at the Canham Natatorium on the campus of the University of Michigan. UC Davis and the Schaal Aquatics Center has been selected as the tournament host for the 2006 national tournament on May 12-14, then Long Beach State will host the 2007 championships in Los Alamitos, Calif.