With women’s water polo Big West action in full swing, the Aggies are facing tremendous challenges against their opponents. This past weekend the team fell to Cal State Northridge and UC Santa Barbara. The Aggies are ranked 13th and have fallen to 10-9 overall and 0-2 in conference.
UC Davis lost to Cal State Northridge 11-10 last Friday. Matador junior Leah Janke stole the show with a game-winner in the final minute. Although seniors Jessica Dunn and Carmen Eggert scored hat tricks, the Aggies were unable to snatch the win away from the Matadors.
Dunn scored in each of the first three quarters, while Eggert scored in the first, third and fourth frames. Junior center Hannah Curran chipped in two goals, while sophomore Katrina Husted and junior Alex Rawlinson added one each. Senior Riane Woods finished with ten saves.
Throughout the course of the match, neither team led by more than two goals. The Aggies were in a tie with the Matadors nine times while the lead shifted seven times.
Cal State Northridge extended their lead in the first quarter 4-2 with two goals from Nelson. Dunn and Curran fought back to level the match at 4-4 with 2:33 left in the half. With Rawlinson’s effort, the Aggies captured their first lead toward the end of the second quarter and were able to extend the margin 6-4.
In the second half, Dunn and Eggert scored, tying the match at 8-8. Through a series of lead changes and goals scored by both teams, the match was leveled at 10-10. With 53 seconds remaining, Janke scored on an extra-player opportunity, putting the Matadors up 11-10.
To add onto the heartbreak of the loss, UC Davis fell to 15th-ranked UC Santa Barbara in the final ten seconds in an 8-7 thriller on Saturday afternoon.
Curran, Eggert and Dunn scored two goals apiece while Rawlinson scored in the seventh. Freshman Jessie Porter led UCSB with three goals, including the game-winner.
Trailing 2-1 throughout the first quarter, UC Davis put on a show, scoring four straight goals in the second to gain a 5-2 halftime lead. Rawlinson scored on a 6-on-5 opportunity and Curran scored a minute later to give the Aggies their first lead. At halftime, the Aggies were up by three.
The Gauchos gained momentum after the break, however, and cut the lead to only one. Matador Kacey Creek equalized the match early in the fourth, netting her second goal at the 1:33 mark.
The Gauchos gained possession with 44 seconds left and called a timeout. Porter scored game-winner with only ten seconds left.
The Aggies continue Big West Conference road action, this time against first-year member San Diego State on Friday. The Aztecs are currently ranked seventh nationally.
VEENA BANSAL can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.