STOCKTON, Calif. - The women's water polo team open with their first home match of the 2019 season in a nationally ranked battle against No. 6 Michigan on Saturday.
No. 7 Pacific will compete against the ranked Wolverines for the fourth time this year, looking to even out the season series trailing 1-2 this year. The match is set for a 1:00 PM start time at Chris Kjeldsen Pool.
No. 7 Pacific vs. No. 6 Michigan | Saturday, March 16th | 1:00 PM
Links: Live Stats, Live Stream
Location: Chris Kjeldsen Pool
LAST TIME OUT:
- The Tigers took three of out four matches two weekends ago at the Wolverine Invite in Ann Abor, Mich.
- Pacific would pick up wins against No. 14 UC San Diego and No. 21 Marist, and Saint Francis University but eventually fall to hosts Michigan by a final score of 11-5.
- Senior Viktoria Szmodics led the Orange and Black with nine goals, six assists, and a shooting percentage of .563. Szmodics extends her goal streak to six matches following her time in Michigan.
- The Tigers' underclassmen continue to emerge in their roles for Orange and Black. As a group, the freshman four-some of Lucy Davis, Brianna Utas, Toula Falvey, and Ana Martinez do Amaral combine for a total of 21 goals and eight assists this year.
- Utas currently leads the first-year group with 11 goals. The Abbotsford B.C. also snagged a career-high five steals in UOP's match against St. Francis two weekends ago.
- Sophomore Savannah Fitzgerald has flourished in the Tigers' starting line this year accounting for 18 goals, a team-high 16 drawn exclusions, and a .462 shot percentage.
- Fitzgerald tied her career and season-high in Ann Arbor with four goals against UC San Diego. The Clovis, Calif. native was a key component to the Tigers' 9-8 victory over the Tritons scoring the go-ahead goal to give Pacific the one-point edge.
SPREAD THE WEALTH:
- The Tigers have showcased their ability to spread the wealth on offense as eight players have tallied at least 10 or more goals; four of which have eclipsed the 10-goal mark for the season.
- Of their 138 goals this year, 92 of those have come off an assist. Viktoria Szmodics currently leads the team with 27 goals and 24 assists.
- Pacific has also taken advantage of their chances on offense as six players hold a .400 shooting percentage or above per at least 15 shot attempts.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENT:
- The Tigers look to defend Chris Kjeldsen Pool in their fourth battle this season with the Wolverines of Michigan. A win for UOP would result in a season split for the two teams as Michigan holds a 2-1 edge against the Orange and Black this year.
- Michigan took the first match, 11-9, in the teams first appearance this season at the Cardinal Invitational (Feb 3rd). UOP responded with a 12-9 win three weeks later (Feb. 23rd) at UCI"s Barbara Kalbus Invitational before falling to the Wolverines, 11-5, on the road.
- Saturday's match determines which team holds the all-time record in their series as it is currently tied 5-5. Five of the last six matches have been decided by three goals or fewer.