May 11, 2007
The second-seeded women's water polo team advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament by defeating seventh-seeded Pomona-Pitzer 22-0, at the Joint Forces Base in Los Alamitos, California. Its next game is scheduled for 6:45 pm on Saturday, May 12, against USC. The game will be broadcast on www.uclabruins.com all-access radio.
The Bruins built an 8-0 lead in the first quarter, and then cruised to a 22-point victory. On the team's first possession, Kacy Kunkel drew a 5-meter penalty that Kelly Rulon capitalized on just forty-five seconds into the game. Fifty seconds later, Rulon scored again to put the Bruins up 2-0. The goal was the 235th of her career, which tied the UCLA all-time scoring record. The Bruin attack looked unstoppable as they seemingly scored on every single possession. UCLA led 13-0 at the half.
By the end of the third quarter, seven different Bruins had scored two goals, and the lead was stretched to eighteen. With 7:39 left in the game, Kelly Rulon scored the 236th goal of her career, setting a new UCLA record. The crowd gave her a standing ovation after she scored, and again as she exited the pool a few seconds later. Assistant coach Coralie Simmons set the record of 235 goals in 2001.
Eleven different players scored in the victory, with nine players scoring at least twice. Tanya Gandy and Kelly Rulon led the team in scoring with three goals each. Emily Feher and Brittany Fullen combined for six saves en route to their second shutout of the season. The team had 17 steals, and limited the Hens to just 16 shot attempts in the whole game. Pomona could not capitalize on any of its five 6-on-5 opportunities.
Adam Krikorian on the victory: "I'm please with the way it went. We put it out of reach early. My hat is off to Pomona for winning their conference. They deserve the opportunity to be here at the NCAA Championships. We did a good job of playing team defense on their motion offense."
On the all-time scoring record: "I'm happy for Kelly. It's an honor for me to be able to have coached both Coralie and Kelly."
Kelly Rulon: "I didn't come here to break any records. At the end of the day, I just want to win another championship...Coralie was my role-model when I was growing up. So breaking her record is a big honor."
"I actually didn't realize I broke the record until the crowd got really loud."
Coralie Simmons: "She could have beaten the record earlier in the year if she wanted to, but as Kelly said, she just wants to win a championship. She is also leading the team in assists this year, and I think that speaks for itself."
UCLA Goals:Kelly Rulon 3, Tanya Gandy 3, Anne Belden 2, Brittany Rowe 2, Courtney Mathewson 2, Molly Cahill 2, Jillian Kraus 2, Kacy Kunkel 2, Kamaile Crowell 2, Gabrielle Domanic, Katie Rulon
UCLA Saves: Emily Feher 4, Brittany Fullen 2
Pomona Saves:Elena Peifer 7