LOS ANGELES -- The No. 3 UCLA men's water polo team posted a 10-7 win on "Senior Day" over No. 6 UC Santa Barbara on Sunday afternoon. The Bruins improved to 26-2 overall and 6-1 in the MPSF and moved into a three-way tie for first (with Stanford and Pacific). The Gauchos dropped to 16-9 overall and 3-5 in the league.
Junior Paul Reynolds led the Bruins with three goals while Matt Gronow, Nicholas Jordan and Eric Van de Mortel each scored two to lead the Gauchos.
The two teams traded goals in the first period with UCSB scoring first when Gronow capitalized on an extra man opportunity (6:30). Sophomore Danny McClintick evened things at 1-1 (3:17) with a goal from the front court. Van de Mortel put the Gauchos up 2-1 (3:03) on the next possession, but UCLA answered with a goal from set by freshman Gordon Marshall (2:10). Gronow scored his second of the game with 1:16 left in the first period to give UCSB a 3-2 lead. Paul Reynolds ended the scoring in the first with a power play goal (:32) to tie it at 3-3.
The Bruins dominated the second period, 4-1. UCLA got a goal from two meters from senior Aimone Barabino (6:15) to lead 4-3. Then sophomore Anthony Daboub scored back-to-back goals from the front court (5:21 and 2:43) to extend the Bruins' lead to 6-3. After a 6-on-5 score from Jordan to trim the lead to 6-4 (1:03), McClintick scored his second of the game (:34) from the front court to give the Bruins a 7-4 advantage at the half.
The Gauchos engineered a mini-rally in the third, outscoring the Bruins 3-2. Paul Reynolds scored his second of the game from the front court to push the lead to 8-4 at the 6:35 mark of the third period. Jordan scored his second (3:52) to trim the lead to 8-5, but freshman Jack Fellner scored from the front court to make it 9-5 (2:07). UCSB scored back-to-back goals to end the third, trailing 9-7. Bryce Miller scored with :35 remaining and then Van de Mortel scored his second on a counter attack (:16).
The Bruins put the game away in the fourth with one more goal while pitching a shutout on defense. Paul Reynolds completed his hat trick with the only goal in the fourth (3:34), a beautiful lob over the Gaucho keeper to provide the 10-7 final score.
Redshirt freshman Garrett Danner made the start in the cage for UCLA and played the entire contest, registering a career-best 14 saves. Chris Whitelegge was credited with eight stops in the cage for UC Santa Barbara.
The Bruins conclude the regular season on Thursday, Nov. 21 when they host No. 2 USC on ESPNU. Game time is slated for 7:30 p.m.
No. 6 UC Santa Barbara at No. 3 UCLA
|No. 6 UCSB||3||1||3||0||7|
|No. 3 UCLA||3||4||2||1||10|
UCSB Goals: Matt Gronow 2, Nicholas Jordan 2, Eric Van de Mortel 2, Bryce Miller
UCSB Saves: Chris Whitelegge 8