STOCKTON, Calif. - The Pacific water polo team (11-8, 4-0) preps for two Golden Coast Conference matches on the road this weekend against No. 16 San Diego State (15-12, 5-1) and Concordia (9-8, 0-2).
The No. 8 Tigers look to stay unbeaten in conference play rounding out the second half of GCC play with an unscathed record of 4-0.
Match Day Info:
-No. 8 Pacific vs. No. 16 San Diego State | Friday, March 12th | 4:00 PM PST
-No. 8 Pacific vs. Concordia | Saturday, March 13th | 2:30 PM PST
-Location: San Diego, CA | Aztec Aquaplex
-Location: Irvine, CA | William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center
LAST TIME OUT:
- The Tigers took two victories at home last weekend versus CBU and Loyola Marymount
- Pacific would pull off a 15-7 win on Friday against the Lancers and use a strong second half to edge the GCC Championship runner-up Lions, 13-7.
- Kyra Christmas helped propel the Orange and Black to their first pair of victories at Chris Kjeldsen ending the weekend with 10 goals and 13 points. Her efforts earned her this week's GCC Player of the Week-her second honor this season.
SEE THE BEST, BEAT THE BEST:
- Pacific has not shyed away in the face of great competition this season. Of their 19 matches this year, 18 of them have been against ranked opponents.
- 11 of the Tigers' games this year have also been against opponents ranked in the CWPA national top-ten poll.
- Despite a 3-8 record against teams in the top-10, eight of those matches have been decided by at least four goals or fewer.
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- seven of which have found the back end at least 15 times.
- Of their 208 goals this year, 137 of them have come off an assist. Senior Viktoria Szmodics currently leads the team with 70 points, 38 goals and a 32 assists- fifth-best in the GCC.
- Pacific has also taken advantage of their chances on offense as seven players hold a .400 shooting percentage or above per at least 15 shot attempts. Senior Brinnley Barthels leads the group going 18-28 (.643) from the field.
- Five Tigers hold shooting streaks heading into the weekend: Truly Dorland, Viktoria Tamas, Kyra Christmas, Viktoria Szmodics, and Savannah Fitzgerald.
- Szmodics holds the longest streak among all active Tigers with 12 straight matches. The senior from Nagykanizsa, Hungary has racked up 24 of her 38 goals on the year during her twelve-match stretch.
- 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 have combined for a total of 22 goals and eight assists this year. Utas currently leads the first-year group with 12 goals.
- Sophomore Savannah Fitzgerald has developed into an offensive threat in the Tigers' starting line this year accounting for 23 goals, fourth-best on the team, at the center position. The Clovis, Calif. native has also tallied 20 drawn exclusions and currently carries a .451 shot percentage for her team.
- Freshman Clara Vulpisi has become a geat life at the goalie position in her first year with the Tigers.
- The goalie from Montreal, Canada has already eclipsed the 100 saves mark in 19 starts with UOP currently with 137.
- During of her 19 appearances, Vulpisi recorded 14 matches with at least five saves holding a record of 9-5 when doing so.
- Vulpisi was lights out for the Tigers in their game against California Baptist last weekend tallying a career-high 15 saves in the cage and holding the Lancers to just 7-30 shooting (.233) from the field.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENT:
- vs. No. 16 SDSU (15-12, 5-1):
- The Aztecs have arguably been on of the hottest teams in conference riding a three-game winning streak with wins against No. 19 San Jose State. Cal State Monterey Bay, and No. 15 Fresno State.
- Emily Bennett and Hannah Carrillo will be SDSU's primary targets on the offensive end each tallying 28 and 27 goals respectively to lead the team. Carillo also ranks third in the GCC in total points scored (73) and assists (36).
- The Tigers will have to find ways to get past Aztec keeper Mauri Cantoni as she ranks in the top three in conference in saves (200) and save percentage (.633). Cantoni has recorded five or more saves in 14 out of SDSU's 21 contests this season.
- vs. Concordia (10-8, 0-2):
- Concordia is currently on a two-game losing streak dropping matches to Santa Clara and Azusa Pacific.
- Dainlyn Santoro, Madison Ravel, and Shannon Graham each scored three goals against the Cougars last Friday.
- The Eagles are 5-3 when playing at home this year. Concordia will face off against CBU this Thursday prior to their match with the Tigers on Saturday.