No. 2 Trojans Tally Two Wins At Home
Nov. 5, 2011
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- In another double-header Saturday, the No. 2 USC men's water polo team gathered in two more wins to extend its winning streak to eight games with today's 14-8 victory over Pepperdine and 17-6 win over Chapman at McDonald's Swim Stadium. Sophomore Nikola Vavic tacked up eight goals across the two games, as USC improved to 17-2 overall with the wins, and goes to 6-0 in MPSF play with the win over the Waves.
Before the games began, USC honored its two graduating seniors, All-Americans Joel Dennerley and Peter Kurzeka. By day's end, the pair had locked in on their 100th career win with the Trojans as the duo aims to finish out the season with their fourth straight NCAA championship. In the day's opener against Pepperdine, the seniors helped keep USC's undefeated push through MPSF play intact. Kurzeka tallied two slick goals in the win, and Dennerley added seven saves to his tally as USC's all-time saves leader.
The Trojans rolled out to a 6-0 lead on the Waves thanks in large part to a first-half hat trick from Tobias Preuss, who scored three straight across the first and second frames. The 6-0 run by the Trojans was capped off by a Preuss steal and assist to Michael Rosenthal, who was off on the counterattack for a spin and score at 5:29 in the second. Pepperdine would stop the run on its next possession, but a 6-on-5 blast from Vavic and a wheeling strike from Jeremy Davie out of set carried the Trojans to an 8-1 halftime advantage.
The Waves were able to get to the back of the net with more precision in the second half, but were still well out of reach of the Trojans, who spread the scoring among five players in the second half to balance out seven goals from the Waves and finish up with a 14-8 victory. It was the most goals allowed by the Trojans in regulation since a 10-8 win over UCLA on Sept. 18, but the Trojan offense was firing enough to keep a tight grip on the USC win.
The Trojans transitioned into their second game of the day as Chapman hit the water next. Warmed up from his hat trick against the Waves, Vavic rattled in four goals in the first half of play against the Panthers, and would tally the last of the day to make it five for the sophomore in the match and eight on the day as USC pinned up a 17-6 win. Chapman had made it close in the first as USC held a slim 3-2 lead after one period of play, but the Trojans would make an eight-goal run from there as Andrew Reego, Andy Hayes, Ivan Kustic and Stephen Siri joined in on Vavic's strikes to get USC ahead 11-2. By the final whistle, Matt Schwartz had his second of the day and Connor Virjee also ripped in a goal to aid the Trojan cause for a final 17-6 win. Will Simon and Clark Barry combined forces in the cage, each pulling in five saves each. Barry hauled in five in the fourth frame, including a tough stop vs. an early fourth-period counterattack.
USC's final home game of the season comes up next with a nonconference clash with Concordia on Saturday (Nov. 11) at 5 p.m. at McDonald's Swim Stadium.
Nov. 5, 2011 -- McDonald's Swim Stadium
#2 USC 17, Chapman 6