LA JOLLA, Calif. -
Edgaras Asajavicius scored three goals and Andy Stevens made several key stops in goal, as No. 9 Loyola Marymount handed 12th-ranked UC San Diego a 7-4 defeat in a Western Water Polo Association clash on Saturday afternoon at Canyonview Pool.
The Tritons trailed 5-4 heading into the fourth quarter, but could not come up with the tying score in the final stanza and the Lions pulled away for the victory. UCSD could not take advantage of a near-capacity crowd with several hundred alumni on hand for Homecoming.
LMU improves to 11-8 overall on the season and 10-1 in the WWPA, while UCSD falls to 10-9 overall and 6-4 in conference play. With the win, the Lions take the regular season series between the two schools, 2-1.
Loyola Marymount won a 7-3 decision over UCSD in early September, while the Tritons recorded a 7-6 win at the SoCal Tournament earlier this month.
Asajavicius led the Lions' offensive attack, scoring twice in the opening quarter and again in the third, while Brian Flacks, Charlie Horton, Albert Samuels and Daniel Smith also had goals for the visitors. Stevens came up big for LMU between the posts, recording 13 saves, several of which came in the decisive final period.
Sophomore Brian Donohoe had a pair of goals for the Tritons, while John Butler and Josh Stiling also got on the board for UCSD. Goalkeeper David Morton finished with nine stops.
The Lions struck first, as Asajavicius scored a goal 1:40 into the first quarter. He converted again less than two minutes later to make it 2-0, but Butler answered for UCSD on the other end to cut the deficit to 2-1 after the opening period.
The two teams traded goals in the first four minutes of the second quarter and Flacks' score made it 4-2 with 3:17 remaining in the half. LMU's lead would stand at two until Stiling scored from two meters with less than a second remaining on the clock to bring UCSD to within 4-3 at the half.
The Tritons tied the game as Donohoe opened the scoring less than two minutes into the third stanza, but Asajavicius' third goal of the afternoon gave the Lions the lead for good, 5-4.
UCSD had several opportunities to tie the score in the fourth period, but Stevens recorded three saves in the quarter -- including a huge stop of William Brown's penalty shot with 3:58 left to play -- to keep the Tritons at bay.
Horton scored on the Lions' next possession and Smith put the finishing touches on the LMU victory with a goal with 52 seconds left.
The Lions outshot the Tritons 17-8 for the game and scored on four 6-on-5 exclusions.
UCSD returns to the pool next Saturday at UCLA. First sprint is set for 1:00 p.m.