Waves Fall in Second MPSF Tournament Contest, 5-4 to UC Irvine

Bence Valics

Nov. 26, 2011

LOS ANGELES- For the second straight game the No. 6-seed Pepperdine men's water polo fell by a score of 5-4 to No. 7-seed UC Irvine in a consolation match of the MPSF Tournament at UCLA's Spieker Aquatics Center Saturday afternoon.

Sophomore goalkeeper Bence Valics (Eger, Hungary/ Szilagyi Erzsebet Secondary) again anchored a strong defensive game for the Waves, as he recorded 12 saves and held the Anteaters scoreless through the final 10:45 of the game. However the Waves were unable to capitalize on offensive opportunities, including an excellent chance to tie the game from within five meters with 20 seconds left.

The match was close throughout, as neither squad ever led by more than two goals in a match that featured four ties. The Waves were led by junior Matthew DeTrane (Moraga, Calif./Campolindo HS/Diablo Valley College) with two goals.

UC Irvine's Winston Newland snapped a 4-4 tie with 2:45 left in the third quarter to help send the Anteaters (16-12) past Pepperdine (12-13). UC Irvine received two goals from Trent Baxter.

Pepperdine took a 1-0 lead with 5:16 to play in the opening frame on a 6-on-5 goal from junior Danny White (Oxnard, Calif./Rio Mesa HS). UC Irvine tied the game, 1-1, with a goal from Mitch Wise at the 1:49 mark in the first quarter.

The Anteaters were able to outscore the Waves, 2-1, in the second period to lead by a 3-2 margin at halftime. In the second frame, the Anteaters received a goal from Baxter at the 6:07 mark to lead, 2-1. The Waves came back to tie the contest, 2-2, with a 6-on-5 goal from DeTrane at the 5:34 mark. However the Anteaters regained the lead going into the half, pushing ahead 3-2 with a goal from Nick Pfeil with 55 seconds to play before intermission.

The Waves tied the game, 3-3, less than a minute into the third quarter on an extra-man goal from DeTrane, his second power-play goal of the afternoon. The Anteaters regained a one-goal cushion with a goal from Baxter on a 6-on-5 opportunity with 3:47 left in the third quarter.

The Waves were able to tie the game at 4-4, with a strike from Nick Cooper (Clayton, Calif./Clayton Valley HS) at the 3:17 mark. However the back-and-forth scoring action continued, as the Anteaters claimed the lead and the eventual game-winner on a goal from Newland with 2:45 left in the third quarter.

While neither team scored in the fourth quarter, both squads had numerous chances. Valics made two stellar consecutive blocks on penalty shots by UC Irvine with 7:40 to play in regulation, keeping the Waves within one.

The Waves final game of the tournament is set for 10 a.m. PT on Sunday, as they will take on UC Santa Barbara in the seventh place game.

UC Irvine 5, Pepperdine 4

1 2 3 4 Final
UCI 1 2 2 0 5
PEP 1 1 2 0 4

UC Irvine: Trent Baxter 2, Winston Newland, Nick Pfeil, Mitch Wise
Pepperdine: Matthew DeTrane 2, Nick Cooper, Danny White

Saves: Jimmy Friedrich (UCI) 12, Bence Valics (PEP), 12



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