SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Santa Clara women's water polo has played a number of close games this year and its Golden Coast Conference opener was no different.
Lizette Perez scored two goals, including the game-winner with less than 4 minutes remaining, to help Cal Baptist outlast the Broncos, 7-6, on Friday afternoon at Sullivan Aquatic Center, site of this weekend's Santa Clara Invitational.
The Lancers twice led by one goal in the second quarter before the Broncos (4-6, 0-1) turned the tables to push ahead by one score a pair of times in the following period.
Two late third quarter goals sent the momentum to Cal Baptist (5-7, 1-0), which snapped a three-game skid. Perez evened the score at 5-all with 2:14 on the clock and less than one minute later Annie Eubanks, who set up two goals, snapped the tie with her lone marker in the game.
Santa Clara leading scorer Hannah Buck tied the game early in the fourth quarter, but Perez tallied the eventual winner with 3:39 on the clock.
The Broncos were unable to cash in on an exclusion with 1:28 left in the game. They had one attempt on that man advantage and three more in the final minute, but none in a prime scoring area.
"It was defensive struggle," Santa Clara head coach Keith Wilbur said. "We just weren't as efficient on offense as we needed to be."
The Santa Clara Invitational gets underway at 9 a.m. on Saturday. There will be seven games on both Saturday and Sunday.
• Lydia Dadd (goalie), Hannah Buck, Annie Eldredge, Lauren Paxton, Maggie Oys and Hailey Eberle have started all 10 games this season. Mara Dominguez has started the last seven contests.
• Dadd was credited with 12 saves, her fifth game with double-digit stops.
• Oys had a career-high three assists
The Broncos will play Redlands (10:20 a.m.) and Cal State Monterey Bay (2:20 p.m.) on Saturday, and Indiana (9:20 a.m.) and Sonoma State (4 p.m.) on Sunday.
On Saturday and Sunday, entry to the Santa Clara Invitational requires the purchase of a $10 pass. Single-game tickets, priced at $6, are ONLY available for the five Santa Clara contests. They may be purchased online or at Sullivan Aquatic Center, which opens one hour prior to the first game each day. For questions, contact the Santa Clara ticket office weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. at (408) 554-4660 or BroncoTickets@scu.edu.
For weekday games, the Leavey Center lot, located on Accolti Way off El Camino Real, is free beginning one hour prior to the start of the game. Any other parking facility on campus will be subject to normal daily rates or restrictions, including the main structure, located on Palm Drive. During the weekend, campus parking facilities are free (except for permit required locations). Click here for a campus map and parking restrictions.