Men’s water polo falls to UCLA for second time

Oct. 10, 2021, 10:50 p.m.

Despite outscoring the Bruins in the first half, No. 3 Stanford (13-3, 0-1 MPSF) fell to No. 2 UCLA (14-1, 1-0 MPSF) 8-6 on Saturday. This is the Cardinal’s second loss to the Bruins this season; the two played one another a week ago at the MPSF tournament, where Stanford lost 10-6.

This time around, the Cardinal started fast and early in Los Angeles. Stanford scored first to open the game and held momentum through the half. By the halfway mark, the Cardinal were up 5-3, with three goals coming from senior driver Quinn Woodhead.

The second half was a different story, however. For the duration of the third quarter, Stanford scored only one goal; the fourth quarter was even less productive for the Cardinal as none of the Stanford players managed to find the back of the net.

UCLA meanwhile continued to add to its scoreline, and with less than two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter the teams were tied 6-6. Stanford had its chances to pull ahead and break the Bruins’ four-game win streak, but the Cardinal were unable to regain their first-half momentum. Instead, UCLA continued to add to its lead as graduate student Nicolas Saveljic scored two more to put the Bruins up 8-6. 

Stanford had more shots throughout the game — 36 compared to the Bruins’ 29 — but UCLA put up a better shooting percentage: 26.7% compared to the Cardinal’s 18.8%. 

While UCLA took the crown in Saturday’s game, Stanford performed significantly better relative to its previous match-up with the Bruins on Sept. 26. Stanford’s shot percentage in this weekend’s game increased from 16.7%, whereas UCLA showed a significant decrease from a 50.0% shooting percentage.

On Sunday, Stanford will face UC Davis at Avery Aquatics Center at 1 p.m. PT. The Cardinal have never lost to the Aggies in the programs’ 22-year history.

Murtaza Hussain is a freshman working with the sports, news and data sections of The Daily. Contact him at news 'at' Zhang '22 J.D. '26 is a Senior Staff Writer from Los Angeles. As an undergraduate, she double majored in English Literature with Honors and German Studies and served as Sports Editor — Vol. 255, 257 and 258.

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