Nov. 17, 2006
Third-ranked UCLA hosts 10th-ranked Long Beach State at the Sunset Canyon Recreation Center today at 3 p.m. The Bruins welcome UC Irvine at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19 -- UCLA's "Senior Day" and final regular-season match. Following this weekend's pair of contests, the Bruins prepare for the season-culminating MPSF Tournament at UC Irvine (Nov. 24-26).
OVER THE WEEKEND: The Bruins won both MPSF road matches last weekend. UCLA routed then-No. 9 Pepperdine, 18-5, on Saturday, Nov. 11 and edged then-No. 6 UC Santa Barbara, 7-6, in overtime the following afternoon. Senior Logan Powell tied his career high with five goals against Pepperdine on Saturday, and the senior attacker added one more on Sunday. Freshman Scott Davidson also enjoyed a successful weekend, tallying five goals in both games (3 vs. Pepperdine, 2 vs. UC Santa Barbara).
TWO TO GO: With the MPSF Tournament less than two weeks away, the UCLA squad has just two MPSF conference games remaining. For the first time all season, the Bruins will host back-to-back contests at the Sunset Canyon Recreation Center. UCLA owns a 2-0 mark at home this season; the Bruins defeated Cal Baptist, 21-3, on Sept. 14 and downed Stanford at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center, 10-8, on Sept. 30.
IN THE CAGE: Freshman Chay Lapin has posted a 5.33 goals against average, totaling 90 saves in 12 games (7.5 saves per game). Lapin recorded 20 saves last weekend at Pepperdine (11) and at UC Santa Barbara (nine). He registered a career-best 13 saves against Stanford on Oct. 14 in the SoCal Tournament. Senior Will Didinger has tallied a 5.86 goals against average and 40 saves in seven games. UCLA's goalkeeping unit has limited opponents to 105 goals through 18 games (5.83 GAA) while totaling 132 saves.
POWELL TAKES THE LEAD: Senior Logan Powell took the team lead for goals scored (25) over the weekend, putting five in the cage at Pepperdine and one against UC Santa Barbara the day after. The senior attacker earned co-MPSF Mikasa Player of the Week honors for his performance last weekend. Powell has recorded eight multiple-goal games and two five-goal efforts in 2006.
BALANCED ATTACK: Nine Bruins have registered 10 goals or more through 18 games. Senior Logan Powell (25), sophomore Krsto Sbutega (23), junior Marco Santos (22) and freshman Scott Davidson (18) lead the team in that category. UCLA's top four scorers have accounted for 53.0 percent of the Bruins' goals this season (88/166). The Bruins' five other double-digit goal scorers are junior Justin Johnson (13), freshman Scott Davidson (13), senior Michael March (12), freshman Kevin Kuga (11) and junior Matthew Jacobs (10).
THREES ALL AROUND: Not only did UCLA win three games in the 2006 SoCal Tournament, but the Bruins also won three games in September's NorCal Tournament. UCLA finished third at both major tournaments this season. The Bruins have been ranked third in eight of nine Top-20 polls this season (No. 4 in week six). UCLA earned a No. 3 rank in the MPSF preseason poll.
AT THE HELM: In his eighth season as head coach of the men's water polo team, Adam Krikorian has tallied an impressive 151-46 career record at UCLA, his alma mater (class of 1997), while leading the Bruins to three NCAA titles. He has also served as the women's water polo head coach for eight seasons, guiding the women to five national titles. Krikorian played water polo for the Bruins from 1992-95, helping lead the 1995 squad to its first NCAA championship since 1972. Throughout his coaching career, Krikorian has coached 39 All-Americans (selected 69 times) and four Olympians.
FRESH MEN: Four Bruin freshmen have posted impressive debuts this season. Chay Lapin has recorded 90 saves in the cage. Scott Davidson is tied for fourth on the squad with 18 goals. Kevin Kuga ranks eighth on the list with 13 goals and scored the game-winner against UC Santa Barbara on Sunday, Nov. 12. Scott Swanson has registered four goals.
HOME, SWEET HOME: The Sunset Canyon Recreation Center at UCLA enters its 42nd year as the home of Bruin water polo. UCLA has played one regular-season game at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center. The Bruins are 2-0 in home matches this season.