No. 7 Tigers recover after loss to No. 3 Cal
No. 7 men’s water polo split the weekend as they hosted No. 3 Cal on Friday and returned to the road to face off against No. 14 Santa Clara on Saturday. The Tigers fell to Cal, but quickly recovered and took a four-point victory over the Broncos.
On Friday, Pacific held their first home game since sweeping the tournament at UC Davis one weekend prior. Five Tigers scored multiple goals; however, that was not enough to catapult them over the Golden Bears. Cal scored within the first 20 seconds of the game to set the tone and take an early lead. The Golden Bears struck again with nearly four and a half minutes remaining in the first quarter.
Attacker Sean Grady ’15 finally got Pacific on the board with nearly three minutes remaining. Cal scored three more times, while attacker Krisztian Laczkovics ’16 was only able to get one goal in edgewise. After the first quarter, the Golden Bears were in the lead, 5-2.
Cal came out firing again in the second quarter. Between the two teams, 10 goals were scored in the second quarter alone. The Tigers kept themselves within reach, 10-7, but they could not get enough momentum to steal the lead.
After the third quarter, Cal still led by three, 12-9. In the fourth quarter, 10 goals were scored once more; however, the Golden Bears still towered over Pacific by three points. The Tigers fell, 17-14.
Notably, goalkeeper Brady Moore ’16 tallied 12 saves in the goal, and six Tigers found the net and scored at some point during the matchup.
The following day, Pacific set off for rival Santa Clara. The Tigers came out with a purpose, scoring three times in the first quarter. Within the first minute, Simon Vogel ’18, on two-meter offense, fired and scored.
Attacker Kale Ai ’18 quickly followed suit, giving Pacific the two-point edge over the Broncos. The two teams volleyed until there were less than two minutes remaining, when Laczkovics scored and stretched the Tigers’ lead.
Santa Clara gradually made a comeback in the second quarter; nevertheless, attacker Ben Stevenson ’17 took matters into his own hands and ensured the lead stayed in the Tigers’ paws.
Laczkovics struck again in the third quarter, scoring his 25th goal of the season. Two-meter offender Tim Reeves ’18 chipped in to bring the score to 6-2.
Pacific maintained a comfortable lead going into the fourth quarter. Both teams tossed two in the goal, but the Tigers had put the Broncos away for good. They improve to 10-4 on the season overall, and fall to 0-1 in conference.
Pacific stays on the road for quite a while as they head to the SoCal Tournament, hosted by UCLA. They return home Sunday, Nov. 2 to host UC Santa Barbara at the Chris Kjeldsen Pool at noon.
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