SDSU Water Polo Earns a Split on Day One of UC Irvine Invitational
Feb. 24, 2007
IRVINE, Calif. - The eighth-ranked San Diego State water polo team split two games on Saturday during the first day of competition at the UC Irvine Invitational at the Anteater Aquatics Center on the campus of UC Irvine. After dropping their morning game to host school UCI, 8-7, the Aztecs (5-3) rebounded with a 12-4 victory over No. 19 Santa Clara in the afternoon.
In its opener against the Anteaters, SDSU was forced to play catch-up for much of the contest after falling behind, 4-2, at the end of the first quarter. In the second period, the Aztecs made things interesting as senior Stacy Werner converted a penalty shot, while junior Becca Ur tallied another score during a 6-on-5 situation, which tied the score at 4-4. However, UCI responded with a Robyn Kaake goal at the 3:38 mark, giving the Anteaters a 5-4 advantage heading into intermission.
Ur, who also added a score the first period, found the back of the net with 25 seconds elapsed in the third quarter to complete her second career hat trick at SDSU. With the score knotted at 5-5, both offenses had trouble denting the scoreboard for the rest of the period as the game turned into a defensive struggle.
UCI regained the upper hand on a pair of goals with less than two minutes gone by in the final frame. Sophomore Anna Gonzales brought the Aztecs to within 7-6 on a penalty shot with 4:08 remaining. That was a close as San Diego State would get, however, as the Anteaters regained their two-goal cushion on a score by Jackie Prine at the 2:02 mark. Senior Elana Cervantes accounted for the game's final outcome when she flipped in a shot as time expired.
San Diego State took out its frustrations in its afternoon tilt with Santa Clara, scoring a season-high 12 goals to end its three-game losing streak. With the score tied at 1-1, sophomore Jenna Schuster gave the Aztecs the lead for good with a goal at the 5:15 mark of the first quarter. SDSU then built a comfortable 7-3 advantage by halftime and the rout was on. The Scarlet and Black continued its attack in the second half, adding five goals, while limiting the Broncos to just one score over the final 16 minutes.
The Aztecs were paced by Gonzales' first career four-goal performance, while Werner recorded three of her own. Schuster dented the scoreborard with a pair of goals along with single tallies by Cervantes, Ur and freshman Danielle Pelke. Meanwhile, senior goalkeeper Sarah Kilgore anchored a superb defensive effort, turning back 15 Santa Clara shots.
SDSU will switch venues on Sunday for the final two games of the UC Irvine Invitational. The Aztecs are scheduled to take on No. 12 UC Santa Barbara at Corona Del Mar High School in Newport Beach, Calif., beginning at 8 a.m. If San Diego State wins, it will face off against the winner of the Loyola Marymount-Arizona State clash at 1:30 p.m. If the Aztecs stumble, they will square off against the loser of the Lions-Sun Devils' game at 2:45 p.m.
UC IRVINE INVITATIONAL
#9 UC Irvine 8, #8 San Diego State 7
San Diego State goalie saves: Sarah Kilgore - 5
Group A-Second Round
#8 San Diego State 12 #19 Santa Clara 4
Santa Clara 2-1-1-0--4
Santa Clara goalie saves: Kristin Barnes - 16