May 12, 2006
Davis, Calif. - The third-seeded UCLA Bruins defeated the sixth-seeded Hartwick Hawks, 15-2, on Friday in the first round of the NCAA championship playoffs at the Schaal Aquatics Center in Davis, California. UCLA (27-4) will face Stanford on Saturday at 7:30 PM PDT in the semi-finals of the women's water polo championship. The game can be heard live on the Internet at www.uclabruins.com.
After early UCLA turnovers, the Bruins got on the board first. Thalia Munro stole the ball from Hartwick and passed to a driving Gabrielle Domanic for the first goal at 4:29. Munro also found an open Tanya Gandy for the next goal at 2:52. Kelly Rulon added two more, two possessions in a row, and just missed scoring a third on the next possession. UCLA took a 4-0 lead after the first quarter.
With 5:56 in the second, Ke. Rulon scored another goal as the ball barely slid past the Hartwick goalkeeper. Hartwick struggled to get shots off against the Bruins. After a Hartwick ejection at 3:36, Molly Cahill found an open Ke. Rulon for her fourth goal of the game. At 2:45, Emily Feher stopped Hartwick's best shot of the game as the ball went off Feher's finger tips, hit the post, and bounced out. Neither team was able to score in the rest of the second quarter and the Bruins took a half time lead of 6-0.
The Bruins stepped up their offense in the third quarter. Molly Cahill opened the second half with a Bruin goal. Kacy Kunkel followed up with another goal on a 6 on 5 opportunity. UCLA continued to score on every possession with a goal from Monique Blanchard, two in a row from Katie Rulon, and one from Anne Belden. Hartwick finally responded with a goal with 34 seconds left in the third quarter from Bronwen Knox, skipping the ball past Feher. The quarter ended with a score of 13-1.
In the fourth quarter, substitute goalkeeper Brittany Fullen came in the game. Domanic and Mathewson put in goals for the Bruins. Teresa Fleming scored for the Hawks. The final score of the game was 15-2.
Eight different Bruins scored for UCLA. Ke. Rulon led the team with four goals. Ka. Rulon, Gandy, and Domanic notched in two goals apiece. Cahill, Ka. Kunkel, A. Belden, Blanchard, and Mathewson scored a goal each. Emily Feher had five saves for UCLA
Hartwick, the champion of the CWPA Northern Division, played UCLA once in its program history. In the game, which was played in Hawaii earlier this season, the Bruins defeated Hartwick 16-3. This is the second time that Hartwick has made it to the NCAA tournament.
Hartwick (27-10) will play Marist at 4:30 PM PDT on Saturday.
The Bruins' next match is on Saturday vs. Stanford at 7:30 PM and will also be broadcast live on the Internet at www.uclabruins.com.
UCLA vs. Hartwick 5/12/06 - NCAA Championship First Round
UCLA Goals: Kelly Rulon 4, Gabrielle Domanic 2, Katie Rulon 2, Tanya Gandy 2, Monique Blanchard, Anne Belden, Molly Cahill, Kacy Kunkel, Courtney Mathewson
UCLA Saves: Emily Feher 5
Hartwick Goals: Bronwen Knox,Teresa Fleming
Hartwick Saves: Olivia Colebourne 5
UCLA Head Coach Adam Krikorian
"I'm really happy that they played well. It started with the defense. We did a great job of putting pressure on the ball. I think it frustrated them and led to easy opportunities for us at the other end of the pool."
UCLA's Kelly Rulon
"We knew they were going to compete. So, there was a lot of pressure. Like Coach said, it starts with the defense. And its starts with the counter."
Hartwick Head Coach Alan Huckins
"I think we did some very nice things. We knew we had to stop the transitions. Sometimes it was good, otherwise I don't know what happened. I think this is the biggest stage that some of these girls will ever play on, and today I think it showed."
Hartwick's Bronwen Knox
"I think today we just fluctuated too much today I think we're going to bounce back. We lost to Marist in the beginning of the year. We're going to come out and play strong. We want to leave no doubt that we should be better then them."
Other Tournament Play
USC vs. Redlands 5/12/06 - NCAA Championship First Round
Marist Goals: Kari Weston, Katelin McCahill
Claremont Mudd-Scripps vs. USC 5/12/06 - NCAA Championship First Round
CMS Goals: Kristin Orkney, Annie Richardson
UC Davis vs. Hawaii 5/12/06 - NCAA Championship First Round
UC Davis Goals: Cassie Schaefer 3, Casie Mota, Christi Raycraft, Sofia Patronas, Katherine O'Rourke