Sept. 17, 2006
Palo Alto, Calif. - Playing in their first meeting of the regular season, the third-ranked UCLA men's water polo team fell to second-ranked USC, 7-6, in the semifinal round of the NorCal Tournament Sunday afternoon at Stanford's Avery Stadium Pool. The Bruins will battle Stanford in the third-place match Sunday afternoon at 4:30 p.m.
UCLA (3-1) got on the board 51 seconds into the contest when senior Michael March registered his first of two goals on the afternoon. The Bruins doubled the margin at 5:20 in the first quarter when senior Logan Powell scored on an extra-man advantage.
USC (5-0) reeled off five goals to take a 5-2 lead late into the second quarter before UCLA sophomore Krsto Sbutega scored with 30 seconds to play before halftime. Trailing 5-3 at the break, the Bruins cut USC's lead in half with 4:54 remaining in the third quarter when Powell fired a shot past USC junior goalkeeper Adam Shilling.
The Trojans extended their lead to 7-4 by the end of the third quarter, as freshman Matt Sagehorn and sophomore Jovan Vranes each added goals for USC.
UCLA rallied with a goal 33 seconds into the fourth quarter by junior Justin Johnson to trail 7-5. March's second goal of the game came with 4:57 remaining in the quarter, cutting the Trojans' advantage in half.
Freshman goalkeer Chay Lapin made seven stops for the Bruins in this third career start. USC's Shilling tallied six saves in the cage.
UCLA and Stanford square off at Stanford's Avery Stadium Pool at 4:30 p.m. Last season, the Bruins lost three matches to Stanford - 10-9 (overtime) in NorCal Tournament action, 6-5 in the SoCal Tournament's third-place game and 9-8 (double overtime) at Stanford.
UCLA (3-1) vs. USC (5-0) - Semifinals
USC Goals: Tommy Corcoran 2, Jovan Vranes 2, Juan Delgadillo, J.W. Krumpholz, Pavol Valovic
USC Saves: Adam Shilling 6