Sept. 29, 2006
SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Fresh off their first four wins of the season, the Santa Clara men's water polo team will face California Baptist University on Saturday, September 30th in Santa Cruz and then return home to Santa Clara to face conference opponent UC Davis at the Malley Pool on Sunday, October 1st. Saturday's match gets underway at 3:00 p.m., and Sunday's home-opener begins at 10:00 a.m.
Saturday's match against California Baptist could be an interesting match between two teams that haven't seen much of each other this year.
"We've played them in years past", said head coach Keith Wilbur. "I haven't really had a chance to see them play this year, and I don't think they've seen us either. My guess is that since they're ranked 19th and we're 20th it will probably be pretty close so it should be a good game."
The game will feature two of the leading scorers in collegiate water polo - Santa Clara Broncos and Western Water Polo Association leading scorer Jack Wall, who has 34 goals on the season, fourth nationally, and Ryan Steiger of California Baptist, who has 47 goals on the season, the leader nationally. Saturday's game, however, is not a WWPA match.
The Broncos are coming off an emotional weekend in which they came from behind to defeat the University of Redlands for their first win of the season. In fact, the emotion almost got the better of them in their game against Claremont. But now they've had a week to let last weekend's success set in their minds, so now it's back to business.
"It was the first win for us, and the guys were really psyched", Wilbur said. "It's key to just take one game at a time and remember that every team we play is capable of beating us."
Following Saturday's contest in Santa Cruz, the Broncos will have another tough test against conference opponent UC Davis who is ranked 8th nationally.
"They are having a great year so far", Wilbur said of UC Davis' squad. "They have some big, physical guys that can play. It will probably be a pretty intense game and we're looking forward to seeing a lot of people out there."
Sunday's home-opener will only be Santa Clara's fourth conference this season, after a perfect 3-0 performance against WWPA teams at the SlugFest last weekend. UC Davis, on the otherhand, will come to Santa Clara at an even 2-2 against WWPA competition after their Saturday stopover in Stockton to take on Pacific.
For the Broncos, Saturday's match in Santa Cruz gets underway at 3:00 p.m., and Sunday's match against UC Davis will begin at 10:00 a.m. at the Malley Pool.