SDSU Water Polo Posts 11-7 Win Over UCSB On Senior Day
April 15, 2006
SAN DIEGO - San Diego State jumped out to a 4-0 lead and never looked back as it defeated 12th-ranked UC Santa Barbara Saturday morning at The Salvation Army Kroc Center. With the victory, the No. 8 Aztecs snap their four-match losing streak, send their five seniors out with a win and improve to 19-9 overall and 5-6 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play. Meanwhile, the Gauchos fall to 13-15 (3-8 MPSF).
In the first quarter, SDSU struck first with just under two minutes gone by when senior co-captain Savanah Kelley found the back of the net off a pass from Becca Ur. The Aztecs padded their lead minutes later as Elana Cervantes lobbed a shot over UC Santa Barbara goalkeeper Jenny Gonzales putting San Diego State ahead by two. Then with one minute remaining in the period, Aztec goalkeeper Sarah Kilgore stopped UCSB's best scoring opportunity of the quarter when she made a save on Jen D'Anna's lob shot. The score would stay that way at the end of one thanks to an SDSU defensive effort that pressured the Gauchos from the outset.
The Aztecs kept the pressure on as Anna Gonzales nailed her 20th goal of the season on a shot seven meters deep. After a Gaucho turnover, SDSU showed great ball movement and it led to senior Rachel Serna finding an open Ashling Taylor on the right side for her 25th goal of the year. UC Santa Barbara cut into the Aztecs' lead when ZiZi Clark scored the first of her two goals on a 6-on-5 player advantage. SDSU responded with two more goals, one from Serna on a power play from Stacy Werner and the other coming off a backhand from Cervantes. UCSB ended the half with a goal from Amanda Tipton making the score 6-2 at halftime.
The third quarter started slow for the Aztecs as they turned the ball over on their first possession. The miscue allowed a 1-on-1 breakaway opportunity for Clark, but Kilgore stonewalled her for one of her game-high 13 saves to maintain the team's four-goal cushion. Four minutes passed before Werner fired a shot into the upper left-hand corner of the net for her 36th goal of 2006. UCSB fought back the rest of the way outscoring the Aztecs 3-1 in the final 2:19 of the period to put the score at 8-5 heading into the final seven minutes.
In the fourth quarter, SDSU scored on its first offensive possession on a lob shot from Savanah Kelley with the Gauchos down a player to stop the UCSB momentum from the third period. Serna added to the Aztecs' lead as she, too, scored on a 6-on-5 opportunity with 3:29 left in the contest. The Gauchos would tack on two more goals to cut the SDSU lead to three, but senior co-captain Cassie Zebisch found fellow classmate Cia Cobb, who scored from the right side to put the game away.
The Aztecs will be back in action Thursday, April 20, when they travel to UC San Diego for the fifth annual Harper Cup.
#8 San Diego State 11, #12 UC Santa Barbara 7
UCSB 0-2-3-2---7 SDSU 2-4-2-3---11
UC Santa Barbara goals: ZiZi Clark 3, Amanda Tipton 2, Lindsay Knott, Sarah Kovach
UC Santa Barbara goalie saves: Jenny Gonzales - 4