High Note: Gallagher, No. 14 Tritons Look to Send Seniors Off On Top
LA JOLLA, Calif. — Junior goalkeeper Reilly Gallagher has been hitting high notes her whole life.
Now she’ll look to send her senior teammates out on one of their own.
The No. 14 University of California San Diego women’s water polo team looks to send its senior class out on a high note with the final two home games of the season this weekend at Canyonview Aquatic Center.
The Tritons play host to No. T-6 UC Irvine on Friday, April 12, before taking on Pomona-Pitzer on Senior Night on Saturday, April 13. Both contests will be streamed live and are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.
A native of Loomis, Calif., Gallagher has been performing in musical theater since childhood, and recalls singing in the car around her family as far back as she can remember.
Now in addition to playing water polo, Gallagher is a member of UC San Diego’s co-ed acapella group on campus, Duly Noted, and has been named the group’s board president for 2019-2020.
“I’ve been in musical theater and singing all my life,” Gallagher said following Tuesday morning’s practice. “When I came to school, I knew a lot of my time was going toward athletics. If I didn’t get myself involved, music would go away from my life.
“It’s been really awesome to get to know people in the acapella community and get to perform.”
Gallagher has performed the National Anthem at big athletic events on campus, such as the annual Harper Cup water polo game against San Diego State as well as this year’s Spirit Night prior to men’s and women’s basketball.
“It’s so, so cool,” said Gallagher. “I don’t really get to show that to the athletic community very often. I’m just honored every time I get asked to do it.”
Acting is also a big part of Gallagher’s life, as the junior participated in musical theater throughout high school and spent this past summer working with 6 Players Studio Theater in Sacramento.
But for now, Gallagher is focused on helping the Tritons finish strong during the stretch run of the 2019 season. The junior has split time in the net with sophomore goalkeeper Bennett Bugelli throughout the season, and acknowledged a strong bond has developed between the two as well as fellow junior goalkeeper Tori Rainone.
“I think what’s really special about it is we’re all very supportive of each other,” said Gallagher. “As much time as we can get in the net is awesome for each of us.”
UC San Diego (16-12, 4-0 WWPA) has just three more regular season contests remaining before the Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) Championships on April 26-28 in Geneva, Ohio.
There, the Tritons will attempt to win their seventh-consecutive conference title and advance to the NCAA Tournament for the seventh year in a row.
But first, the focus is on sending the senior class out with two home wins this weekend.
“It’s so important,” Gallagher said. “We love them a lot. This game and kind of the whole season is not only for us as individuals, but for them.
“They’ve put so much work into this program, to send them off on a high note would be really extraordinary.”
UC SAN DIEGO VITALS
National Rank: 14 (CWPA)
BLUE OUT BLOW OUT
Friday night's home contest against No. T-6 UC Irvine is themed "BLUE OUT BLOW OUT," as the first 300 fans wearing navy blue will receive a free UC San Diego hat! Students are admitted free with a student ID and general admission tickets can be purchased at the door at Canyonview Aquatic Center. Game time Friday night is set for 6 p.m.
BIG (WEST) NEWS FOR UC SAN DIEGO ATHLETICS
On Nov. 27, UC San Diego was officially invited to become a member of the NCAA Division I Big West Conference. The Tritons will begin a four-year reclassification period starting in the fall of 2020 and will play a full Big West schedule. However, UC San Diego women's water polo will join the Big West Conference in the spring of 2020 and immediately resume its eligibility to compete in the NCAA Championship. For the 2024-25 academic year, all sports will be eligible to compete in Big West and NCAA Division I championships. Read the full press release here.
- The Tritons are ranked No. 14 in the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Top 25, which matches the highest UC San Diego has been ranked this season.
- UC San Diego has won six-consecutive Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) championships en route to six-straight NCAA Tournament appearances.
- The Tritons have won six-straight games and 42-consecutive WWPA regular-season contests.
- UC San Diego swept three conference road games last weekend, earning victories over Cal State Monterey Bay, Cal State East Bay and Sonoma State.
- Sophomore Taylor Onstott led the Tritons with eight goals, two assists and three steals in the WWPA road wins last weekend.
- The Tritons have already faced six teams this season ranked in the top-10 of the CWPA Top 25 (USC, Cal, Hawai'i, Pacific, Michigan and UC Santa Barbara twice).
- UC San Diego has also played and seven other opponents ranked in the top 25 (Loyola Marymount twice, Indiana, San Jose State, Wagner, Long Beach State twice, CSUN, Marist and California Baptist).
- Sophomore Grace Pevehouse leads the Tritons with 48 goals and 60 total points.
- Onstott ranks second on the team with 44 goals, 14 assists and 58 total points, and leads the Tritons with 30 steals.
- Senior Krista Schneider has a team-high 19 assists and is second on the team with 23 steals.
- Sophomore goalkeeper Bennett Bugelli is 8-8 in the net this season as a starter, recording 128 saves with a .554 save percentage.
- Junior goalkeeper Reilly Gallagher has a 7-4 record as a starter, and has amassed 98 saves with a .492 save percentage.
1. UC San Diego: 4-0, 16-12
2. Gannon: 2-0, 6-14
3. Salem: 2-1,13-12
4. Sonoma State: 1-1, 7-12
5. Fresno Pacific: 1-1, 6-19
6. McKendree: 1-2, 11-12
7. Cal State East Bay: 0-2, 11-13
8. Cal State Monterey Bay: 0-2, 7-14
9. Mercyhurst: 0-2, 6-15
UC SAN DIEGO NATIONAL RANKINGS
For full rankings click here.
• Preseason: 15
• Week 1: 21
• Week 2: 21
• Week 3: 20
• Week 4: T-17
• Week 5: T-17
• Week 6: 14
• Week 7: 14
• Week 8: 17
• Week 9: 16
• Week 10: 17
• Week 11: 17
• Week 12: 14
MEET THE 2019 TRITONS
The Tritons return five starters and 17 players total from last season’s squad, including All-WWPA First-Team selections senior Chanel Schilling, senior Krista Schneider and junior goalkeeper Reilly Gallagher. Sophomore Grace Pevehouse earned All-WWPA Honorable Mention in 2018, while Taylor Onstott was named WWPA Newcomer of the Year and joined Ciara Franke on the WWPA All-Freshman Team. In addition, sophomore goalkeeper Bennett Bugelli was named WWPA Championship MVP.
2019 WWPA Preseason Coaches Poll (first-place votes)
1. UC San Diego - 64 points, (8)
2. Cal State East Bay - 57 points, (1)
3. Sonoma State - 44 points
4. Fresno Pacific - 42 points
5. Cal State Monterey Bay - 40 points
6. Mercyhurst - 28 points
7. McKendree - 21 points
8. Gannon - 15 points
9. Salem - 13 points
2018 YEAR IN REVIEW
UC San Diego is coming off a 24-12 campaign in 2018 and a berth in the NCAA Opening Round. The Tritons defeated 11 ranked opponents and won their sixth-consecutive WWPA Championship en route to a sixth-straight NCAA Tournament appearance. Five Tritons received ACWPC All-America accolades last season, including first-team selections Kayla Fedler and Chanel Schilling, second-team choices Krista Schneider and Reilly Gallagher, and honorable mention Taylor Onstott. Head coach Brad Kreutzkamp was named WWPA Coach of the Year for the fourth time in nine seasons at the helm, as he also moved up into second place all-time in coaching victories for the program.
HEAD COACH BRAD KREUTZKAMP
Head coach Brad Kreutzkamp is in his 10th season at the
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About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Post Graduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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For complete coverage and information regarding UC San Diego Athletics, follow the Tritons online at UCSDtritons.com and through social media on Twitter (@ucsdtritons), Instagram (@ucsdtritons) and Facebook (ucsdtritons). In addition, you can follow UC San Diego women's water polo on Twitter (@ucsdwwp) and on Instagram (@ucsdwwp).