What a Ride: Tritons Fall in National Semifinal to Stanford, 16-7
STANFORD, Calif. — What a ride it's been.
The University of California San Diego men’s water polo team had one of the best seasons in program history come to an end on Saturday afternoon, as the Tritons fell to Stanford, 16-7, in the National Collegiate Water Polo Championship Semifinals at Avery Aquatic Center.
UC San Diego (20-6) played right with the No. 1-ranked team in the nation into the third quarter before running out of steam in the second half. The Tritons trailed by just two at halftime, 7-5, and were tied 3-3 at the end of the first quarter.
Sophomore Connor Turnbow-Lindenstadt scored a team-high three goals, redshirt junior goalkeeper Jack Turner recorded 10 saves, while seniors Alessandro Valania, Carson Ivancovich, Kevin Asplund and junior Cooper Milton each scored one goal apiece.
It was the third time in the last five seasons UC San Diego reached the national semifinal, also reaching this point in both 2014 and 2015. The Tritons were also the national runner-up in 2000.
The Tritons’ magical run was highlighted by its 19th WWPA Championship, a win against Long Beach State in the NCAA Opening Round, 12 total victories over teams ranked in the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Top 20 and 10 wins in their final 12 games of the season.
UC San Diego will lose six key seniors from its 2018 roster, but returns the majority of its core group for 2019.
It's very possible there's more good times ahead next season.
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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