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Top-Ranked Bruins Down No. 5 UC Irvine 7-6, Clinch No. 1 Seed Into MPSF Tourney
Courtesy: UCLA Athletics  
Release:  11/14/2004

Nov. 14, 2004

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - With a 7-6 come-from-behind victory against fifth-ranked UC Irvine on Sunday afternoon, the No. 1 UCLA men's water polo team captured its first perfect conference record and first outright MPSF title since 1999. The Bruins (21-2, 8-0) completed their regular season schedule with their 16th consecutive victory and the best regular season winning percentage (.913) since 1972. The victory also assures UCLA of a No. 1 seed heading into the conference tournament, which begins on November 26.

UCLA trailed early as the Anteaters (14-11, 4-4) jumped out to a 2-0 lead halfway through the first period. Senior two-meter man Dan Noon struck first for UC Irvine as he sent a shot past UCLA goalkeeper Joe Axelrad at 4:33 in the first. He wasted no time tallying his second goal of the day and giving the Anteaters a two-point advantage as he sent another shot to the back of the net at 3:27. The Bruins got on the board when sophomore Logan Powell skipped a shot by UCI goalkeeper Joe Wynne at 2:58. The teams exchanged goals to finish the period and headed into the second with UC Irvine ahead 3-2.

In the second the Bruin defense awoke as Axelrad allowed just a single goal to senior driver Rick Merlo to open the period. UCLA stayed within one when Michael March sent an off-balanced shot into the back of the net for a 4-3 score.

The Bruins finally tied the match after halftime as Bruin senior Brett Ormsby scored his second of three goals at 3:01 in the third. Then fellow senior Josh Hewko scored with a shot from two-meters at 2:06 to give UCLA its first lead of the match, 6-5. Ormsby would add another goal to make the score 7-5 before UC Irvine's Chris Peters netted a goal with :03 remaining in the match to finalize the score at 7-6.

Ormsby led all scorers with his hat trick while Noon and Merlo headed UC Irvine's attack with two goals apiece.

Axelrad tallied a total of ten saves on the day while Wynne picked up six.

Six Bruin seniors (Axelrad, Peter Belden, Albert Garcia, Hewko, Ormsby and Ted Peck) were honored prior to the game as part of Senior Day 2004.

Teams		1  2  3  4     T
UCI    3  1  1  1 --  6
UCLA   2  1  3  1 --  7

UC Irvine Goals: Dan Noon 2, Rick Merlo 2, Tim Hutten, Chris Peters UCLA Goals: Brett Ormsby 3, Logan Powell, Michael March, Albert Garcia, Josh Hewko UC Irvine Saves: Joe Wynne 6 UCLA Saves: Joseph Axelrad 10


‹ UCLA Men's Water Polo



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