Men's Water Polo: Big Splash Set for Saturday, Bears Face Top-Ranked Card





  • Printer Friendly Printer Friendly
  • Comments Comments (0)

Prominent sinners in Greek mythology found themselves in Tartarus, where goddesses of vengeance called Erinyes kept them from reaching for succulent fruit hanging overhead, just out of their grasp.

The No. 3 Cal men's water polo team hasn't messed with Zeus that we know of, but managed to get its own personal tormentor in the form of No. 1 Stanford, which has consistently blocked its path to its most cherished goals.

The Bears (13-4, 3-2 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation) have a long history with the Cardinal, most recently losing by a combined three goals in their last two meetings.

Cal has reached the branch before, however, upsetting the eventual national champions last season in the Big Splash. Russell Bernstein saved 13 shots to help the Bears fight out a 4-3 win.

Cal will have a chance to try and snatch the elusive fruit again when it faces Stanford (18-2, 5-1) in a conference match Saturday at Avery Aquatics Center.

The Bears will also host No. 19 UC Davis (14-10) Sunday at Spieker Aquatics Complex.

"This is a good opportunity to put ourselves in a good position for the NCAA," Cal coach Kirk Everist said.

The Cardinal is definitely a measure of what it takes to survive in the water polo world, with national team members Tony Azevedo and Peter Hutnut leading the charge.

Cal's performance will be an indicator of its strength and ability to compete for the actual NCAA bid in the MPSF tournament, which will include likely candidate Stanford.

The Bears and the Cardinal last duked it out during the Southern California Tournament's semifinal round. Cal fell to Stanford 8-7, and finished third in the tournament.

The Bears know they will have to go through the Cardinal to reach a MPSF title and the NCAA Tournament.

"We know we're going to have to pull some upsets," Greg Panawek said.

They will need to concentrate on playing solid defense and transitioning to fast counterattacks, Everist said.

Stanford defeated No. 2 UCLA 12-10 in overtime this past weekend. the first time the Cardinal was sent to overtime this season.

Although the Bears are focused on Saturday's match against their rival, they are not forgetting about the Aggies.

UC Davis is looking to rebound from subpar performances of the past weekend. At the Air Force Tournament, the Aggies split their matches 2-2, losing to Cal Baptist and Air Force but defeating UC Santa Cruz and George Washington.

"UC Davis is an up-and-coming team," Everist said. "It will be nice to play someone outside of our league."

Tags:






Comments (0) »

Comment Policy
The Daily Cal encourages readers to voice their opinions respectfully in regards to both the readers and writers of The Daily Californian. Comments are not pre-moderated, but may be removed if deemed to be in violation of this policy. Comments should remain on topic, concerning the article or blog post to which they are connected. Brevity is encouraged. Posting under a pseudonym is discouraged, but permitted. Click here to read the full comment policy.
White space
Left Arrow
Sports
Image McLachlan's win helps Cal advance
Riki McLachlan wasn't supposed to play singles in Saturday's second round...Read More»
Sports
Image Bears run by Utes, into the national final
For many Cal students, Saturday marked the end of their collegiate caree...Read More»
Sports
Image Bears fall short in first ever NCAA final
Battling furiously near the front of the cage, Stanford's Annika Dries re...Read More»
Sports
Image Cal dispatches Trojans, advances to round of 16
With the Cal women's tennis team needing one more win to clinch a v...Read More»
Sports
Image Tedford picks Maynard as the Bears' starting quart...
In recent years, Cal football coach Jeff Tedford has kept...Read More»
Sports
Image Bears drop weekend series in Corvallis
Sundays haven't been kind to Cal's starting pitchers lately. A week ago, O...Read More»
Right Arrow




Job Postings

White Space