Vavic Strikes Nine In Win Over Concordia
Nov. 10, 2012
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - USC junior Nikola Vavic went bigger than ever today with a nine-goal outing to lead the Trojans to their 22nd straight win of the year. Vavic's nine goals against Concordia is the most by a Trojan since at least 1999, which is the last year that collegiate water polo scoring included two-point goals. Behind Vavic's triple hat trick today, the top-ranked Trojans topped visiting Concordia with a 19-4 victory, keeping USC solidly undefeated at 22-0 on the year.
Vavic's historic outburst also pulled the junior from No. 9 to No. 7 all-time in career scoring at Trojan, as he now stands alone at No. 7 with 159 career goals - two away from a jump to sixth place. Vavic could well have hit double digits in today's win, but opted instead to give up at least a few scoring chance in order to serve up assists to teammates.
The Trojans got out of the gates by shutting out Concordia while building up a 4-0 lead. That's the 23rd shutout period pitched by the Trojan defense in regulation this year. USC goalie Ely Bonilla would back up the Trojans to the tune of eight saves down the stretch, while the USC offense kept clicking. After the 4-0 first frame, USC took a 5-0 lead on another from Vavic to open the second. Concordia got on the board next in finishing off a 6-on-5 chance, but Vavic had three straight goals waiting to punch in on the Eagles. He even saved one more for later in the half, following up goals from Kostas Genidounias and Matt Burton to take USC ahead 11-1, and Andrew Reego would deliver the last of the half as the Trojans took a 12-1 lead at the break.
In the third, the teams would hang even with each other, with Weston Paulson providing back-to-back goals for the Eagles before USC's Marc Vonderweidt and Max Hurst-Mendoza each got on the scoring board for the Trojans to make it a 14-3 lead entering the fourth. There, Vavic would find his ninth goal, this one a sizzling strike off a turn of his defender. Russell Renteria and Reego would each blast two in the fourth, and USC finished off a 19-4 victory over Concordia.
USC has just two more regular-season games left as the Trojans aim to preserve their undefeated run through 2012. USC will first visit Pepperdine tomorrow (Nov. 11) at 1 p.m. for an MPSF matchup in Malibu. USC's regular-season finale brings rival UCLA to Trojan next week. Gametime is still yet to be determined, as it will be televised on Pac-12 Networks on Nov. 17 at McDonald's Swim Stadium.
#1 USC 19, Concordia 4
SAVES: Ely Bonilla (USC) 8, Brandon Lucia (CON) 4 [first half], Jaime Saunders (CON) 6 [second half].