LA JOLLA, Calif. - The 10th-ranked UC San Diego men's water polo team's pressuring defense prevailed against Pomona-Pitzer Saturday afternoon as the Tritons took a 12-3 win, handing the Sagehens their first loss in seven games.
UCSD's record extends to 11-9 overall and 10-2 in the Western Water Polo Association (WWPA). Pomona-Pitzer's overall record falls to 9-13 on the year and 4-4 in conference play.
The Tritons played calm around the ball, drawing three five-meter penalty shots, seven six-on-five opportunities, 10 steals and six field blocks, showing their composure on both sides of the pool.
Nick Michels played the final quarter in the cage for UCSD, coming up with six big saves. Two of those came in man-down situations and the last denied Pomona-Pitzer's two-on-none push in the final minute. Cameron Ravanbach played the first three quarters for the Tritons, knocking down seven saves overall.
UCSD was first to score in all four quarters, and Josh Stiling was there to account for three out of the four. Stiling finished the afternoon with six goals individually. Tiki Toplak added another two, while Lance Curtiss, Luke Syka, Brian Donohoe and Brian Roach each added one to the team total.
Two of the Sagehens' three goals came from six-on-five opportunities, showing how quick the Triton defense was to adjust to the position of the ball during regular posessions.
UCSD will hit the road for its final trip of the regular season to play a pair of WWPA matches, taking on No. 16 UC Davis on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 6 p.m. and No. 19 Santa Clara on Saturday, Nov. 3 at noon.
UCSD 3 - 4 - 2 - 3 = 12
PP 1 - 1 - 0 - 1 = 3
UCSD Goals: Josh Stiling 6, Tiki Toplak 2, Lance Curtiss, Luke Syka, Brian Donohoe, Brian Roach.
PP Goals: Jason Cox 2, Mark Hudnall.
UCSD Saves: Cameron Ravanbach 7, Nick Michels 6.
PP Saves: Tyler Hill 3, Austin Strong 5.