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No. 3 UCLA Men's Water Polo to Host Three Matches This Weekend
Courtesy: UCLA Athletics  
Release:  11/05/2008

Nov. 5, 2008

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THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULE
Friday, Nov. 7 - 3 p.m.

No. 9 UC Irvine (9-9, 0-3 MPSF) at No. 3 UCLA (11-5, 3-2 MPSF)
at UCLA's Sunset Canyon Recreation Center

Saturday, Nov. 8 - 9 a.m.
Concordia University (15-11) at No. 3 UCLA (11-5)
at UCLA's Sunset Canyon Recreation Center

Sunday, Nov. 9 - 1 p.m. (Senior Day)
No. 8 UC San Diego (16-9) at No. 3 UCLA (11-5)
at UCLA's Sunset Canyon Recreation Center

WHAT'S ON DECK
The No. 3 UCLA men's water polo team (11-5, 3-2 MPSF) hosts three games this weekend, beginning Friday against No. 9 UC Irvine (9-9, 0-3 MPSF). UCLA plays Concordia University on Saturday at 9 a.m. and No. 8 UC San Diego on Sunday at 1 p.m.

SENIOR DAY
Prior to Sunday's home match against UC San Diego (Nov. 9), the UCLA men's water polo program will honor its three seniors - Chris Allen, Krsto Sbutega and Russell Simpkins.

THE LEADERBOARD
Through games played on Nov. 3, senior Krsto Sbutega ranks third among MPSF players with 2.06 goals per game (33 goals, 16 games). Junior goalkeeper Chay Lapin is sixth among MPSF goalkeepers with 9.27 saves per match (139 saves, 15 games). Lapin's 5.67 goals against average this fall ranks fourth in the conference.

HIGH FIVE
Two players have netted five goals in a match this fall - Krsto Sbutega (at UC Irvine, Sept. 13) and Scott Davidson (at Pacific, Oct. 26). The last Bruin to score six or more in a game was David Pietsch, who tallied six goals in a 10-8 win over UC Irvine (Oct. 1, 2005). Sbutega has scored four goals twice this season, and Davidson and Ben Hohl have each recorded one four-goal game.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Senior Krsto Sbutega and junior Chay Lapin have been honored this fall as MPSF Co-Players of the Week. Sbutega has earned the honor twice this fall - once after scoring a career-high five goals in UCLA's 10-4 win at UC Irvine (Sept. 13) and again after logging six goals through two MPSF road wins the final weekend of October (Oct. 25, 26). Lapin captured weekly honors after having tied his career high with 15 saves in a 10-4 win against Long Beach State (Oct. 4).

TOP SCORERS
UCLA's offense has been led by senior Krsto Sbutega (33 goals) and junior Scott Davidson (21 goals). Sbutega has scored 126 career goals, moving into a tie with Corbin Graham for eighth-place on the program's career goals scored list. Davidson scored one goal in each of the team's first six matches and logged a season-high five goals at Pacific (Oct. 26). Four other Bruins - Ben Hohl (18), Jacob Murphy (15), Scott Swanson (13) and Cullen Hennessy (12) have scored in double-digits.

SOPHOMORE STARS
Ben Hohl and Jacob Murphy have made significant contributions in their sophomore campaigns. Hohl, who scored 27 goals as a true freshman in 2007, has registered 18 goals this fall (third-most on the team). Hohl has scored at least one goal in 12 of the Bruins' 16 matches. Murphy scored seven goals in four SoCal Tournament games and has logged two three-goal games.

IN THE POLLS
As released on Wednesday, Nov. 5, UCLA has been ranked third in the nation, behind USC and Stanford, respectively. UCLA began the season ranked fourth, ascended two slots after having finished second at the NorCal Tournament (Sept. 21) and dropped back to the No. 4 spot after a fourth-place finish at the SoCal Tournament (Oct. 12). Most recently, the Bruins rose to the No. 3 ranking after having defeated then-No. 3 California on the road, 11-10.

IN THE CAGE
Junior goalkeeper Chay Lapin has recorded 139 saves in 15 matches, logging 11 saves or more in six matches. At the NorCal Tournament, Lapin made 45 stops in four games, allowing just 4.5 goals per game. Against Long Beach State (Oct. 4), Lapin tied his career high with 15 saves in a 10-4 MPSF victory. Freshman Andrew Mesesan and junior Alex Lawrence have each made six saves.

POSTSEASON PUSH
UCLA has just five regular-season contests remaining - three at home and two on the road. The Bruins' schedule is lined with three MPSF matches against UC Irvine (Nov. 7), UC Santa Barbara (Nov. 15) and Pepperdine (Nov. 22). The 2008 MPSF Tournament will be hosted by Pepperdine, from Nov. 28-30 (Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool in Malibu, Calif.). The winner of the MPSF Tournament earns an automatic bid to the 2008 NCAA Tournament, to be hosted at Stanford (Dec. 6-7).

AT THE HELM
In his 10th season as head coach at UCLA, Adam Krikorian has tallied a 187-59 record. A four-year letterwinner and 1997 UCLA graduate, Krikoriam has been a part of 14 national championships in 16 seasons with the water polo program. As head coach of the men's and women's programs, Krikorian has guided UCLA to 10 national titles (three men's, seven women's). Krikorian led the Bruins to three national titles as an assistant coach and one as a player (1995).


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