Tigers Fall To Stanford, Stun Michigan Off Christmas' Career-High

Tigers Fall To Stanford, Stun Michigan Off Christmas' Career-High

IRVINE, Calif. - The women's water polo team fell to No. 2 Stanford and stunned No. 6 Michigan in the second day of UC Irvine's Barbara Kalbus Invitational.

The No. 10 Tigers dropped their first match of the day to the last year's NCAA runner-up Cardinal, but would pull off an upset later on in the afternoon against the Wolverines to move their record to a 4-4 on the year.

Stanford improves to a perfect 9-0 while Michigan falls to 7-7. 


Pacific vs. Stanford - In Case You Missed It:

  • The Tigers attempted eleven shots in the first period but none of them could find the mark allowing the Cardinal to jump in front and never look back. Pacific would remain scoreless until the 7:17 mark in the third quarter.
  • Two goals by Savannah Fitzgerald and Kyra Christmas in the fourth period gave Pacific some life but it would not be enough as Stanford continued to drive forward for the victory.

First Period:

  • Mariana Duarte and Viktoria Szmodics got two good looks on goal to set the tone early but staunch Stanford back line would not allow a score.
  • The Tigers had their eye on the goal five times in the period but were unlucky to finish it through. The Cardinals tallied two goals to take the lead, 2-0.

Second Period:

  • The Tigers would go scoreless on six shot attempts from the field to have themselves down 7-0 entering the half.

Third Period:

  • Mariana Duarte picked up the Tigers' intensity as she found her way for the score putting UOP on the board with 7:17 left to play in the period.
  • Stanford answered back with four goals of their own to end the frame with a 11-1 advantage.

 Fourth Period:

  • Savannah Fitzgerald aided the Tigers out of their scoring drought and fended off a Stanford defender to earn her first goal of the match (5:55).
  • With the help of teammate Viktoria Szmodics, Kyra Christmas contributed the third goal of the day off a powerplay drive (4:09).
  • The Orange and Black would assemble three more offensive drives after that point but could not capitalize on either of them ending the match. 

Pacific vs. Michigan - In Case You Missed It:

  • In their second match of the year, the Tigers took it to their CWPA rivals Michigan topping them by a final score of 12-9.
  • Mariana Duarte orchestrated a three-goal performance in the first half to help the Orange and Black coast to an 8-3 lead and stay in front. 
  • Michigan would slice the lead to a close as three in the third and fourth frames but could got gain enough momentum as UOP sealed the victory.  

 First Period:

  • The Wolverines would get the first goal of the match but Mariana Duarte would quickly answer for Pacific off a powerplay assist from Christmas. 
  • Duarte had the hot hand in the period drawing an exclusion on the following drive and adding another 6-on-5 goal to give the Tigers the slight edge. 
  • The Tigers would draw three exclusions in the period and convert on 3-3 powerplay opportunities as Christmas tallied another score to make it a 3-1 lead for UOP ending the frame. 

Second Period:

  • The Tigers went on a 2-0 run to open up the second quarter as Christmas (7:11) and teammate Viktoria Szmodics (5:37) each knocked in a goal to push the lead to their largest yet, 5-1. 
  • After trading a pair of goals to the Wolverines, Viktoria Tamas added her first of the match at a pivotal moment for Pacific scoring at even strength off a dish from Christmas to end the period. This pinned the score at 8-3. 

Third Period:

  • Both teams would go scoreless through the first four minutes of play. 
  • Christmas broke the Tigers' drought by scoring off a powerplay (3:50) to keep Pacific in the driver's seat. 
  • A Truly Dorland goal (3:05) would put the Orange and Black in good position but Michigan would end the period on a 3-0 run to chip at the score, now down 10-7.

Fourth Period:

  • Brinnley Barthels came in clutch in the first minute of the final frame connecting on a goal off the feed from Christmas at the 7:11 mark.
  • Smzodics padded the Tigers' statline scoring their final goal of the match which put them up 12-8 with 3:38 to go. UOP would hold the Wolverines after that point. 

Notables:

  • Kyra Christmas set a new career-high with seven assists in the Tigers' contest on Saturday. The junior finished with three goals, seven assists, and four drawn exclusions- all of which would be a game-high. This would also be the most points the Calgary, Alberta native has accounted for during her three-year tenure with the Tigers. her last career-high in points was nine against Fresno State last season. 
  • Viktoria Tamas also set a career-best with five steals against the Wolverines. 
  • Pacific shot .436 from the field while holding Michigan to just a .346 shooting percentage. The Tigers would limit the Wolverines on offense in the first half having them shoot 3-16 from the field. 

Up Next for the Tigers:

  • The water polo women's team will battle it out for fifth in the nation tomorrow morning as they take on No. 5 Hawaii.
  • The Rainbow Wahine are currently 10-2 overall, taking a 10-8 win over No. 8 Arizona State on Saturday.
  • The match between the two teams is set for 10:30 AM at Anteater Aquatics Complex. 

 

 

For the latest on the Pacific Women's Water Polo be sure to follow them on Twitter and Instagram.