Sept. 30, 2006
Pasadena, Calif. - Senior goalkeeper Will Didinger recorded a season-best nine saves to lift the third-ranked UCLA men's water polo team to a 10-8 victory over sixth-ranked Stanford at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center. The win gave UCLA its second win of the season against Stanford and marked the MPSF conference season-opener for both teams.
Sophomore Krsto Sbutega led the Bruins' offensive attack, scoring two goals on a game-high six attempts. The Bruins also received two-goal performances from freshman Kevin Kuga and sophomore Scott Davidson.
UCLA (6-1, 1-0) and Stanford (5-4, 0-1) exchanged goals in the first frame, which ended in a 2-2 deadlock. The Bruins raced to a 5-2 advantage with 3:05 remaining in the second quarter and never relinquished the lead. Sbutega and senior Marco Santos scored goals within 1:06 midway through the quarter before Davidson tallied the Bruins fifth goal at 3:05.
The Cardinal reduced UCLA's lead to 7-6 after sophomore Will Hindle-Katel scored at 6:45 in the third quarter. After senior Brad Greiner gave UCLA a two-goal advantage at 4:46, Stanford freshman Drac Wigo registered a goal at 4:23, reducing UCLA's lead to 8-7.
The Bruins led 9-7 after three quarters before Davidson scored his second goal of the afternoon, handing UCLA a three-goal cushion. Stanford came as close as two goals when Hindle-Katel found the back of the cage at 3:35. Didinger squelched a strong opportunity by Stanford when the veteran goalkeeper stuffed a three-meter shot from freshman Janson Wigo with 30 seconds to play.
Stanford goalkeeper Sandy Hohener tallied six stops and teammate Jimmie Sandman made five saves in the second half.
The Bruins hit the road Friday, Oct. 6 to face UC San Diego in La Jolla, Calif. Game time is 6 p.m.
UCLA (6-1) vs. Stanford (5-4)
Stanford Goals: William Hindle-Katel 2, J.J. Garton 2, Drac Wigo 2, Michael Bury, Janson Wigo
Stanford Saves: Sandy Hohener 6, Jimmie Sandman 5