Women of Troy Picked No. 1 In MPSF Preseason Poll
Jan. 7, 2014
In the closest MPSF Preseason Women's Water Polo Coaches' Poll in the seven-year history of the survey dating to 2008, defending national champion USC collected 34 points and four first-place votes in the 2014 edition to edge Stanford's 33 points and three top votes. This year's coaches' poll outcome marked the first No. 1 finish for the Trojans since 2009, snapping the four-year run by the Cardinal.
USC returns 2013 MPSF Player of the Year and All-American Monica Vavic, who poured in 77 goals last year with an MPSF-High 2.75 per game, along with senior All-Americans Flora Bolonyai at goalkeeper (5.09 goals-against average), Kaleigh Gilchrist, Madeline Rosenthal and Kelly Mendoza. Stanford has turned in four consecutive unbeaten conference seasons, a 27-0 record since the MPSF opener in 2010. USC beat Stanford in the longest NCAA women's water polo championship game ever played last season, winning 10-9 in triple sudden-death to claim the Trojans' fourth national championship. USC head coach Jovan Vavic is entering his 20th season at the helm of the Trojan women's water polo program.
Placing third in this year's poll is UCLA with 26 points. California placed fourth with 20 points. Arizona State (16), San Jose State (12), and Bakersfield (6) rounded out the poll. USC will see its first action in a scrimmage this week, hosting UCLA for a Friday (Jan. 3) morning test at 8:30 a.m. at the Uytengsu Aquatics Center. The Trojans' first official competition will take place Feb 8-9 at the Triton Invitational in San Diego, Calif.
This year's MPSF Championship (April 25-27) and NCAA Tournaments (May 9-11) are both hosted by USC.
Rank Team Points (First-Place) 2013 Record/Conference Finish 1 USC 34 (4) 27-1 Overall; 5-1 MPSF/#2 (NCAA Champion) 2 Stanford 33 (3) 29-3 Overall; 6-0 MPSF/#1 3 UCLA 26 28-7 Overall; 3-3 MPSF/#4 4 California 20 17-7 Overall; 2-4 MPSF/#5 5 Arizona State 16 26-7 Overall; 4-2 MPSF/#3 6 San Jose State 12 12-12 Overall; 1-5 MPSF/#6 7 CSU Bakersfield 6 12-24 Overall; 0-6 MPSF/#7