Nov. 30, 2002
The third-ranked and fifth-seeded Bruins fell behind 3-0 in the first quarter and could not recover, falling to top-seeded Pepperdine 7-6 in the MPSF Semifinals. With the defeat, UCLA drops to 14-8 on the season and will play in tomorrow's third-place match. The Waves will advance to the MPSF Championship match.
Pepperdine jumped ahead early scoring three goals within the first five minutes of play. However, their lead was not too large to overcome, as the Bruins chipped away throughout the half.
UCLA got on the board with seven seconds remaining in the first quarter when Brett Ormsby converted his first four-meter penalty shot of the contest.
Trailing 3-1 to start the second quarter, UCLA evened the score after Ormsby and Michael March each scored in the period's opening two minutes. The Waves battled back to regain the lead at the 3:57 mark, but it would be short lived. With 1:53 left before halftime, Peter Belden found the back of the net. With seven seconds left in the half, the Waves were called for their second penalty of the match. However, Ormsby was not able to convert and sent the teams into overtime tied at 4-4.
March struck again with 4:31 left in the third to give UCLA a 5-4 lead, which would be its only of the match. Pepperdine scored twice before the third quarter ended to grab a 6-5 advantage heading into the final period.
Pepperdine increased its lead to 7-5 when Jesse Smith scored at the 3:24 mark. Yet, the Bruins did not give up and brought the game within one goal when Ormsby scored his third of the match with 2:49 left. With the final minutes dominated by aggressive play, UCLA was unable to find the net again.
Senior goalkeeper Brandon Brooks picked up six saves in the match, bringing him within eight saves of becoming UCLA's all-time career saves leader.
The Bruins will face the loser of the #2 Stanford/#3 California match that will be held tonight at 6:30. The third-place match will be played at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow evening at the USA Water Polo National Aquatic Center.
UCLA- Ormsby (3), March (2), Belden
Pepperdine- Grubbs (2), Niehaus, Rodriguez, Smith, Acosta, Hausmann
Goalkeepers -UCLA-Brooks (6 saves, 7 GA A); Pepperdine- Soltis (7 saves, 6 GA A)