Sunday, December 28, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Aggie men now one game from WWPA glory

1124ucdpolo1W

UCD senior Bernie Rogers plays defense against LMU's Seth Coldren (16) in the Aggies' 9-7 win over the Lions in Saturday's WWPA semifinal at Schaal Aquatics Center. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

By
From page B1 | November 24, 2013 |

By going unbeaten in league play, the UC Davis men had already made it evident that the Western Water Polo Association tournament title would be theirs to lose.

Hence, No. 4 Loyola Marymount had an uphill battle against the top-seeded Aggies in Saturday’s first semifinal. And atop that acclivity, UCD found a 9-7 win at Schaal Aquatics Center.

With the victory, the Aggies (now 10-0 in games against WWPA opponents and 14-12 overall) earned a place in the championship contest, where they will match up against second-seeded UC San Diego on Sunday (2 p.m.) at Schaal.

The first to put UCD on the board Saturday was its bona fide standout, senior Bernie Rogers. The league-proclaimed Player of the Year left LMU trailing, a position the Aggies never found themselves in on Saturday.

Closing the gap when opposed by local goalkeeper Philip Bates was no uncomplicated task for the Lions. Bates averaged three saves per quarter, with five of his 12 overall stops coming from 6-on-5 situations.

“We had some great goalie play (on Saturday),” said UCD first-year coach Daniel Leyson. “That enabled us to make some important stops down the stretch. That was big for us.”

Leyson also praised the contributions on offense that came from skilled Aggies who are often overlooked; such as Tyler Elliott, a senior who bolstered UCD’s lead in the first quarter, which ended with the locals up 2-1.

The second period also saw two young Aggies tallying goals: sophomore Austin Beckwith and freshman Max Vigeant. The LMU offense encroached on UCD’s net as well in this quarter, tying the game at 2-2 and 3-3, but Vigeant’s goal within the final minute meant the visitors faced a 4-3 deficit at halftime.

After the break, the recuperated squads returned to the pool much less benign. The Lions (four) and the Aggies (three) went on to each surrender more goals in the third quarter than they did in any of the others.

All of the LMU goals in the first three periods were 5-meter penalty shots or 6-on-5 situations. Two of the Lions’ goals were delivered by sophomore Milutin Mitrovic, who boasted a hat trick by the end of the contest.

The Aggie action in this portion of the match began with Elliott throwing a skip shot that cut through LMU’s defense. Capitalizing on 6-on-5 scenarios, Rodgers and junior Chris Richardson each added a goal themselves.

Rodgers, with less than 30 seconds on the clock in the third quarter, flung a swiftly flying ball into the Lion net to hit his hat trick and cement his team’s 8-6 advantage going into the final period.

After a few initial moments of inaction in the fourth quarter, Mitrovic landed LMU’s first full-strength goal to lift his team to a more hopeful 8-7 with three minutes remaining.

But it wasn’t the Lions making the last-minute goals, it was the Aggies. Junior Teddy Nicholson,  after just making a timely steal, emerged from a torrent of two aggressive Lion guards to find the net at the 30-second mark. The Davis High graduate’s goal made it 9-7, and was the final tally of the contest.

A victory in the Sunday’s finals would earn UCD an automatic berth into the NCAA championship tournament, which will be hosted by Stanford University on Dec. 7-8. The locals last played on this stage 16 years ago.

The aforementioned No. 2 UCSD bested No. 3 Santa Clara, 8-4, in Saturday’s second semifinal. The Aggies will combat the Triton in a matchup that has history in the league tournament.

In 2012, the then top-seeded UCSD knocked UCD in the semis, with a tight 11-9 decision. The year prior, the Tritons prevailed, 8-7, in a title match against the Aggies.

It’s worth noting, however, that the locals upset their impending opponent, 12-11, earlier this month.

Leyson is optimistic about his squad’s ability to claim the WWPA title, yet Saturday’s game for him exposed some adjustment that’s needed before the match.

“We just gotta keep getting better,” Leyson said. “Our execution on 6-on-5’s wasn’t even close to the level it needs to be to win the championship. We definitely have to improve in that respect.”

— Reach Brett Johnson at bjohnson@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8052. Follow him on Twitter at @ReporterBrett.

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Yolo makes hydrogen connection

    By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    NYC officer mourned at funeral as tensions linger

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    N. Korea uses racial slur against Obama over hack

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    AirAsia plane with 162 aboard missing in Indonesia

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Sacramento man convicted for 2011 bar shooting

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Drugs, stolen car lead to women’s arrests

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    Pedal around Davis on weekly bike ride

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Nominate teens for Golden Heart awards

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    USA Weekend calls it quits

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Supplies collected for victims of abuse

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Sweet success: Cancer Center helps young patient celebrate end of treatment

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Reserve tickets soon for Chamber’s Installation Gala

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Holiday hours continue at The Enterprise

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Covell Gardens hosts New Year’s Eve dance

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    UC Davis debate team wins national championship

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Portuguese breakfast set for Jan. 25

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    At the Pond: It all started with kayaking on Putah Creek

    By Jean Jackman | From Page: A5 | Gallery

     
    Find the first cabbage white butterfly, and win a pitcher

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

    Does pre-eclampsia raise autism risk?

    By Phyllis Brown | From Page: A6

     
    Long will talk about value of hedgerows for adjacent farms

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6 | Gallery

     
    It’s a wonderful life — and a wonderful state

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery

    College sees benefits in loan guarantees

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

     
    Tickets for New Year’s Eve party going fast

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12

    .

    Forum

    This cat is on life No. 7

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B4

     
     
    It was a busy, black-eye year for disease control

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

    Say thanks to the caregivers

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Bombing is not the answer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    Just Us in Davis: Despair and hope for the new year

    By Jonathan London | From Page: A10

     
    Commission’s list needs vetting

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Rifkin’s statement is offensive

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Writer’s arguments fall flat

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A11

    Cuba policy changes highlight a momentous opportunity

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    .

    Sports

    DHS boys get good film in tournament loss

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Sacramento survives Knicks in OT

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Kings cruise past Sharks

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Lady Blue Devils top Tigers to reach Ram Jam title game

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Sports briefs: Republic FC to host camp series

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

     
    College bowl roundup: Sun Bowl goes to the Sun Devils

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Kaiser’s trauma center in Vacaville earns verification

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Rob White: Davis tech community is growing

    By Rob White | From Page: A9

    Yolo County real estate sales

    By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A9

     
    First Northern adds Peyret to agribusiness loan team

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    .

    Obituaries

    Ruth Allen Barr

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Charles ‘Bud’ Meyer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, December 28, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B8