SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Coming off a 3-1 start at last weekends Inland Empire Tournament in Redlands, Calif., the Santa Clara Men's Water Polo (3-1; 3-0 WWPA) team heads to Stanford for the prestigious NorCal Tournament. The Broncos find themselves at No. 14 in the latest CWPA Top 20 poll and head coach Keith Wilbur sees this weekend as a great opportunity to play some of the top teams in the country.
"The NorCal tournament is a 16-team tournament and almost every team there is ranked in the top-20," said Wilbur. "It is a fun environment for water polo where there are two courses going throughout the day, and every match-up is a great game. We are going to see some high level competition throughout the weekend and it will be a great
opportunity to improve every game we play."
The Broncos will open the first round with host No. 4 Stanford at 10:50 a.m. Saturday. The Cardinal have not played an official contest this season, instead spending a weekend scrimmaging multiple teams at the Irvine Invitational. However, Stanford will be one of the toughest tests for Santa Clara this season. Wilbur has emphasized this in practice, preaching good fundamentals on offense and defense.
"Stanford is one of the top team in the country and the first step to competing with a team of that caliber is to minimize mistakes," said Wilbur. "They will immediately capitalize on things like turnovers or blown assignments on defense. We will emphasize ball control on offense, anticipation on counter attacks and good communication on defense."
The Broncos are coming off a good performance last weekend in Southern California where they collected three conference wins to kick off their season. The Broncos got a stellar weekend from junior Tucker Carlson who cashed in on 13 goals on his way to earning WWPA Co-Player of the Week honors. Redshirt junior Jimmy Moore found the back of the net six times, while redshirt sophomore Matt Kochalko, redshirt sophomore Kyle Nadel, redshirt freshman Stephen Bilz and freshman James Rude each tallied four goals. Splitting halves between the pipes, John Nash and Matt Pritchett played well; combining to make 56 saves in four games.
"I thought we played progressively better throughout the weekend and that is very important with all the youth on our team," said Wilbur "With each game, we were able to gain some experience, and when we played well, we also started to gain more confidence. Those are two qualities that we will be looking to build upon throughout the season."
Check back to SantaClaraBroncos.com or the NorCal Tournament results page for the latest updates from this weekend.
November 18, 2012 Bronco Men's Water Polo Finishes Sixth at WWPA's
November 17, 2012 Men's Water Polo Takes Down Whittier on Day Two of WWPA's
November 16, 2012 Water Polo Falls to UC Davis in First Round of WWPA's
November 14, 2012 Three Broncos Honored by WWPA
November 11, 2012 Men's Water Polo Falls on Senior Day to No. 16 UC Davis
November 10, 2012 Water Polo Falls 15-8 at No. 4 Cal
November 4, 2012 Water Polo Falls to No. 3 Stanford
November 3, 2012 Bronco Water Polo Unable to Take Down No. 10 UC San Diego
November 2, 2012 Casidhe McClone Sets High Goals for the End of the Water Polo Season
October 31, 2012 James Rude Making a Splash His Freshman Year for the Broncos
October 27, 2012 Water Polo Can't Take Down No. 12 LMU
October 26, 2012 Men's Water Polo Hosts LMU This Saturday
October 21, 2012 Water Polo Splits Two Games on Final Day of The Rodeo
October 20, 2012 Broncos Ride Good Defense Past Cal Baptist at The Rodeo
October 19, 2012 Water Polo Falls to Bucknell in The Rodeo Opener
October 18, 2012 Men's Water Polo to Host The Rodeo This Weekend
October 13, 2012 Broncos Fall to No. 6 Pacific on the Road
October 12, 2012 Water Polo Travels to Pacific, Hosts Alumni Game This Weekend
October 7, 2012 Water Polo Can't Hold Down No. 13 Air Force, Fall 14-9
October 5, 2012 Bronco Water Polo Heads to Colorado to Face Air Force
September 30, 2012 Broncos Lose to No. 16 Princeton and No. 12 UC Davis on Final Day of SoCals
September 29, 2012 Water Polo Falls to Two Top-10 Teams on Opening Day of SoCals
September 28, 2012 Bronco Water Polo Heads South for SoCal Tournament
September 27, 2012 Water Polo's Kochalko: Santa Clara is the Perfect Fit For Me!
September 23, 2012 Water Polo Wraps-Up Three-Win Weekend at Aggie Shootout
September 23, 2012 Water Polo Wins Two in First Day of Aggie Shootout
September 21, 2012 Water Polo Travels to Davis for Davis Shootout
September 16, 2012 Broncos Split Two Games on Final Day of NorCals
September 15, 2012 Water Polo Falls to No. 4 Stanford and No. 12 Davis
September 14, 2012 Water Polo To Play at Stanford in NorCals This Weekend
September 12, 2012 Tucker Carlson Named WWPA Co-Player of the Week
September 9, 2012 Men's Water Polo Finishes Opening Weekend with 3-1 Record
September 8, 2012 Men's Water Polo Takes Two Games To Open Season
September 6, 2012 Men's Water Polo Ready to Open 2012 Season at Inland Empire Tournament
September 4, 2012 Bronco Water Polo Has Successful Scrimmages vs. Cal and Pacific
August 1, 2012 Summer For SCU Men's Water Polo
June 28, 2012 Santa Clara Men's Water Polo Announces 2012 Schedule
October 25, 2011 Michael Wishart Breaks Santa Clara Blocks Record
October 24, 2011 Catching Up With Kyle Surber