vs. No. 3 Stanford (13-1)
Sunday, Mar. 23 • 1 p.m.
Canyonview Aquatic Center • La Jolla
UC San Diego continues non-conference play this weekend against No. 3 Stanford. Sunday’s matchup is followed with a game against Fresno Pacific before Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) play starts on April 5 against Sonoma State. The game with Stanford marks the 17th game against a ranked opponent, which includes seven wins for the Tritons. The opening sprint is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Canyonview Aquatic Center.
In the latest Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) poll released Mar. 19, UCSD was slated No. 13 in the nation. The Tritons have reached as high as No. 6 this season, which marks the highest ranking since head coach Brad Kreutzkamp took over the program in 2010.
UCSD finished 3-1 at the Aztec Invite to improve to 17-9 overall. On Saturday in the opener, UCSD was edged by Princeton in sudden death, 14-13. Melissa Bartow led the charge offensively and finished with a hat trick, while Courtney Miller finished with 16 saves in the loss. The Tritons rebounded to win the afternoon game over Bucknell, 8-5. On Sunday, UCSD earned a pair of victories over Harvard, 15-7, and Wagner, 11-8. Bartow found the back of the cage three times against the Crimson and followed with four scores in the win over the Seahawks. On the weekend, Bartow led the Tritons and finished with 10 goals and 4 ejections drawn.
GUILIANA GARNERS CONFERENCE HONOR
Jolene Guiliana was named the WWPA Player of the Week for the week of Mar. 13. The Irvine native totaled nine goals and five assists in four games for UCSD. In a 16-1 win over Occidental, Guiliana totaled a hat trick of goals to go along with three dimes. She followed with a career-high five goals and an assist in a win against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, 18-9. The following day, the junior scored a pair of goals and dished out a helper in an 11-6 victory over Pomona-Pitzer. It marked the first such honor of her career.
COURTNEY IN THE CAGE
Courtney Miller was named the Kap7/Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) Player of the Week for the week of Feb. 24. The sophomore from Honolulu, HI led No. 11 UCSD to an upset of No. 6 Hawaii at the UCI Invitational. Miller finished with 63 saves at the four game Invitational and recorded double-digit blocks in each game. Miller recorded a career-high 20 saves in the 10-9 sudden death victory over Hawaii in the opener. She followed with a 13-save performance against No. 3 UCLA in an 8-6 loss. Miller finished out the Invitational with 13 blocks against No. 7 Arizona State and 17 saves against No. 10 CSU Northridge.
LIZOTTE NAMED FEBRUARY STAR OF THE MONTH
Sarah Lizotte was named a San Diego Hall of Champions Star of the Month for February. Lizotte totaled 27 goals in February with nine multi-goal efforts, as the Triton women’s water polo team picked up seven wins, including five over top-20 squads. During the Triton Invitational on Feb. 8-9, the product of Riverside (Riverside Poly HS) broke UCSD's career scoring and assists records in front of the home crowd at Canyonview Aquatic Center as well. The San Diego Hall of Champions honors outstanding athletes from San Diego, as well as athletes who have achieved stardom for local teams.
Sarah Lizotte broke the UCSD all-time career scoring and assists records at the Triton Invitational on Feb. 8-9. The senior has scored 274 career goals to pass Triton Hall of Fame member, Olympian and former captain of the U.S. National Water Polo team Julie Swail's record of 245. Lizotte also passed Jamie Dailey's mark of 125 assists to put her total at 148. She also currently holds the UCSD single-season record for goals (92), attempts (228) and assists (67). Check out the U-T San Diego’s piece on her accomplishments by clicking here.
WWPA PRESEASON POLL
UCSD has been slated to finish first in the 2014 Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) standings according to the league’s annual preseason coaches’ poll. The defending WWPA champion Tritons were a unanimous pick to reclaim the title in 2014 after garnering the maximum 16 points, including four first-place votes. Sonoma State was picked second and earned 12 points, while Cal State East Bay followed with 11 points in third. The Pioneers also received the final first-place vote. Rounding out the standings, Cal State Monterey Bay (6) was fourth and Cal State San Bernardino (5) was picked fifth.
The Tritons return many key players for the 2014 campaign, highlighted by Sarah Lizotte. The senior from Riverside was named the 2013 NCAA Division II Player of the Year by the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPAC), Division II All-American First Team, Division I All-American Honorable Mention, WWPA Player of the Year and All-WWPA First Team after scoring 92 goals and dishing out 67 assists, both single-season UCSD records. The Tritons also return sophomore Courtney Miller in the cage, who was named All-American First Team and All-WWPA First Team after setting the school single-season record for saves at 317. UCSD also returns senior Melissa Bartow (All-American First Team, All-WWPA First Team), sophomore Alexis Wieseler (All-American Second Team, All-WWPA Honorable Mention), senior Leah Gonzales, junior Jolene Guiliana and sophomore Julia Kirkland.
The Tritons have reached as high as No. 6 in the national rankings in 2014 ... The Tritons are currently riding a three-game winning streak and have won four of its last five games … UCSD is currently 12-6 when playing at a neutral site ... The Tritons are outscoring opponents 83-46 in the opening quarter … UCSD is currently shooting .411 as a team … The Tritons have converted 76 six-on-five advantages compared to the opponents 64 … Sarah Lizotte has scored 282 career goals, good for first in school history to break Julie Swail’s record of 245. Lizotte also sits in first with 155 assists to pass Jamie Dailey’s mark of 125. She also currently holds the UCSD single-season record for goals (92), attempts (228) and assists (67) … Melissa Bartow has drawn 260 ejections in her career, which marks the UCSD all-time career record. Bartow is currently the UCSD all-time career leader in penalties drawn (39) as well. She has drawn 10 penalties in 2014, good for fifth on the all-time single season list … Courtney Miller holds the UCSD single-season record of saves (374) and sits in eighth in career saves with 614. She has 240 blocks on the year, which puts her in eighth on the all-time single season list. She recorded a career-high 20 saves against Hawaii (2/22) … Jolene Guiliana also shares the UCSD single-season assists record (67) with Lizotte, and sits in sixth (65) on the single-season steals list … Alexis Wieseler sits in seventh on the UCSD single-season goals list (72) … The Tritons sport 21 California natives on their roster, with Courtney Miller (Honolulu, HI), Lauren Boyer (Honolulu, HI) and Nicole Gerwin (British Columbia, Canada) the three players from out of state.
HEAD COACH BRAD KREUTZKAMP
UCSD head coach Brad Kreutzkamp is in his fifth season leading the Tritons. He has compiled a career record of 100-77, with a winning percentage of .565. In his four seasons at the helm, Kreutzkamp has led UCSD to a pair of Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) Championships and two appearances at the NCAA Championship. In his fourth season, Kreutzkamp led UCSD to an NCAA Championship berth after knocking off Loyola Marymount, 10-8, in the Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) title game. The 12th-ranked Tritons finished a program-best sixth place at NCAA Championship and closed the season with a 26-15 overall mark, recording the most wins since the 1994 national championship squad went 28-2. He was honored as the Division II Coach of the Year by the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC) and was also named WWPA Coach of the Year. In 2012, Kreutzkamp led the Tritons to their most wins since 2003 in his third season at the helm. UCSD finished 21-14 overall and narrowly missed their second straight trip to the NCAA Championship. He guided the Tritons to an 18-20 overall record in 2011, leading the Tritons to their first WWPA title since 2000 and the school’s first appearance at the NCAA Championship in program history. Kreutzkamp came to UCSD as an assistant coach with the women’s team in 1999 before joining longtime head coach Denny Harper on the men’s staff the following season. Prior to his arrival on the La Jolla campus, Kreutzkamp was the head coach of both the boys and girls varsity programs at Grossmont High School from 1996-99.
ABOUT THE CARDINAL
Stanford, ranked third nationally, enters with a 13-1 overall record. Stanford is currently riding a four-game winning streak with wins over No. 6 UC Irvine (14-6), No. 9 San Jose State (16-9), No. 8 Loyola Marymount (18-4) and Fresno Pacific (20-4). The lone loss came against No. 2 UCLA at the UCI Invitational, a 9-6 decision. The offense averages 13.93 goals per game, led by four players that are tied for the team lead in scores, as Annika Dries, Ashley Grossman, Kiley Neushul and Maggie Steffens have found the back of the cage 26 times. The defense allows 5.93 goals against and is spearheaded by a trio of goalkeepers, as Gabby Stone, Emily Dorst and Julia Hermann share the duties in the cage. The head coach of the Cardinal is John Tanner, who is currently in his 17th season at the helm.
UCSD is currently 4-17 all-time against Stanford. The last meeting came last season at the Hawaii Spring Break Tournament. The Cardinal won the game, 17-4, behind a 6-0 first quarter. The Tritons were led by a pair of scores from Lizotte in the loss.
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The Tritons face Fresno Pacific next Friday, Mar. 28 at 6 p.m. at Canyonview Aquatic Center.