Nov. 14, 2009
DAVIS, Calif. - The No. 13 Santa Clara men's water polo team, in their final regular season game against a conference opponent before the WWPA Tournament, avenged an 8-7 loss to UC Davis earlier this season by beating the No. 16 Aggies today, 10-4, in Davis.
The first quarter was tightly contested and ended in a 2-2 tie. UC Davis took the lead on the man advantage just 1:15 into the game, but Wall answered with a five-meter penalty shot at 5:29 to even things. Liam Farrell earned an assist when the Broncos went up 2-1 as junior Mitch Klipa tipped in Farrell's pass from two meters out. The Aggies got another power-play goal with 3:25 left in the period to finish out the scoring.
In the second quarter, Wishart turned away Brendan Sigourney's shot from point blank to spark the Broncos. Poggetti got his first a little under two minutes after Wishart's save, skipping the ball at the cage. Aggie goalie Kevin Peat initially saved Poggetti's shot, but couldn't keep the ball from crossing the plane. Wall got his second with 3:17 to go in the half, tucking the ball inside the post after receiving a pass from sophomore Daley Meistrell. Wishart made two more saves on attempts by Matt Richardson in the closing minutes to keep UC Davis off the scoreboard.
The Broncos took control of the game in the third period, opening the second half with three straight goals to take a 7-2 lead. Wall scored his final two goals, tossing one in from the outside, and another on the six-on-five, and Klipa got his second from five meters out, sticking the ball in the lower right corner of the cage.
The Aggies finally ended their 17-minute scoreless drought with 2:23 in the quarter, when Richardson took a pass from Colin Hicks and beat Wishart. UC Davis then worked up a little momentum, scoring again with 1:45 to go in the third when left-hander Russell Hampton scored from the near side.
That was all the scoring that the Aggies would get though, as Santa Clara made a nice stop on UC Davis' set play in the waning seconds of the third, and the Broncos scored three unanswered goals in the fourth. Poggetti opened the final period with a man-advantage goal and closed the period with a five-on-five goal, and Farrell got on the score sheet between the junior's goals on Meistrell's second assist of the contest.
With the win, Santa Clara improves to 20-10 on the season, and will wrap up the regular season with a home contest against second-ranked California tomorrow at noon.