Aggie season ends in 10-9 upset to CSUN

Bryn Lutz drew a key five-meter foul and scored a goal in the fourth quarter.
(Wayne Tilcock,
May 1, 2016

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Centers Greta Kohlmoos, Allyson Hansen and Carla Tocchini each scored two goals but 10th-ranked and fifth-seeded UC Davis could not undo a late two-goal deficit, falling by a 10-9 final to No. 24 CSUN in the fifth-place game of the Big West Conference women’s water polo championship at Campus Pool Sunday.

The Aggies close out their year at 17-13 overall. The Matadors end up at 12-20 for the season.

Sophomore Paige Virgil and juniors Hannah Harvey and Bryn Lutz also netted goals for UC Davis. CSUN attacker Katelyn Fairchild led all players with four goals, including two in the fourth quarter.

Save for Matador sophomore Madeline Sanchez’s goal in the opening minutes of the contest, the Aggies did not trail for most of the first half. Kohlmoos completed a power play at the 3:00 mark in the first quarter to take a 2-1 lead, while Tocchini and Kohlmoos each restored the lead to a single goal during the second. CSUN had an answer for each, tying the game for a fifth time immediately after Virgil converted a 6-on-5 opportunity with a minute left in the half. After the next restart, Hansen delivered from two meters to lift the Aggies to a 6-5 halftime edge.

However, CSUN scored three times in its shutout third frame to take an 8-6 lead, forcing UC Davis into pursuit mode for the fourth. Harvey broke the dry spell with her log shot in the opening possession of the finale, cutting the deficit to 8-7. Fairchild hit a 6-on-5 score to restore the margin to two for CSUN. Lutz drew a five-meter foul, and Tocchini converted the penalty shot at the 4:06 mark to halve the lead back to one. Again, the Matadors answered: junior McKenzie Pollei beat the shot clock with her goal at 1:13, extending the score to 10-8. Lutz brought the Aggies back to a one-goal deficit on the next possession, but CSUN had virtually an entire shot clock to run off. By the time UC Davis could get possession and call a timeout, only two seconds remained.

Sunday’s fifth-place game ended an otherwise remarkable season for the Aggie women’s water polo program. The team climbed as high as No. 5 for two different stints in the national poll, head coach Jamey Wright claimed his 400th career varsity win, and UC Davis scored upsets of California and Arizona State during the early season.

UC Santa Barbara Campus Pool • UC Davis games only.

No. 24 CSUN (12-20) 2 3 3 2 - 10
No. 10 UC Davis (17-13) 2 4 0 3 - 9

GOALS - CSUN: Katelyn Fairchild 4, Amy Yule 2, Shannon Hovanesian 2, McKenzie Pollei 1, Madeline Sanchez 1. UC DAVIS: Greta Kohlmoos 2, Allyson Hansen 2, Carla Tocchini 2, Paige Virgil 1, Hannah Harvey 1, Bryn Lutz 1.