After yet another dominant weekend, No. 1 Stanford men’s water polo (17-0, 0-0 MPSF) remains the only undefeated collegiate water polo team in the nation. The Cardinal beat No. 9 UC Irvine (9-8, 0-0 GCC) on Friday and Pomona-Pitzer (9-11, 4-1 SCIAC) on Saturday by scores of 19-15 and 16-4, respectively.
This weekend was yet another show of dominance from the team under first-year head coach Brian Flacks. While the battle against the Anteaters seems to have been difficult if just judging the final score, the actual contest proved to be the contrary.
The Cardinal let UC Irvine score the first goal, but from there, Stanford passed the Anteaters and never looked back. However, UC Irvine kept the score close until the Cardinal went on an 8-3 scoring run from the middle of the third quarter to the middle of the fourth quarter. This run was capped off by junior driver Jackson Painter scoring a goal, which gave the Cardinal a 7-point lead. While UC Irvine tried to make a run in the last couple of minutes, it was too little too late. Stanford won 19-15, but conceded the most goals they have all season in the process.
Leading the way for the Cardinal was Painter, with a fantastic outing of five goals. Following him, both junior driver Soren Jensen and senior driver Larsen Weigle converted a hat trick. Junior goalie Nolan Krutonog finished with 10 saves.
After the Friday night showdown, Stanford finished its weekend playing the Sagehens on Saturday. The Cardinal opened the game in their most dominant first half of the season. Playing both stellar offense and defense, Stanford allowed in no goals while scoring 10 of their own in the first half alone. The second half did not fare much better for Pomona Pitzer, however, as the Cardinal piled on six more goals in comparison to the Sagehens’ four. When the final buzzer rang, Stanford emerged victorious 16-4.
The Cardinal were led by senior 2M Beck Jurasius with four goals, followed by junior 2M Ike Love with a hat trick. Krutonog had 11 saves in the game, anchoring the steadfast Stanford defense.
With another two wins in its pocket, Stanford now looks to take on division-rival No. 2 UCLA (16-1, 0-0 MPSF), whose only loss this season has come at the hands of the Cardinal.
The match is set for Saturday, Oct. 15 at 1 p.m. at Avery Aquatics Center.