No. 6 Cal Heads South to MPSF Tournament
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  04/23/2008

April 23, 2008


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This Week in Cal Water Polo
The No. 6 California women's water polo team travels to the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament in San Diego. Finishing the regular season in a tie for seventh place with No. 9 UC Irvine, the Golden Bears earn the seven seed for the tournament, and will take on No. 13 Long Beach State in the first round Thursday. A win would advance Cal to play No. 2 Stanford on Friday, and a loss to the 49ers would send the Bears to play the loser of No. 7 Hawaii v. No. 11 CSUN on Saturday.

Recently in Cal Water Polo
The Bears split their final regular season games - dropping a heartbreaking 6-5 loss to No. 2 Stanford on April 11 and dismantling Cal State Bakersfield, 16-6, April 12. The No.6 California women's water polo team lost a 6-5 physical battle to No. 2 Stanford on Friday evening at Avery Aquatics Center in the annual Big Splash. Down by two, 6-4, Camille Hewko brought the Bears within one with 3:28 to play but it was not enough. Neither team put one through for the remaining minutes, and Stanford came away with the conference victory. Eleven different bears scored as Cal dominated a short-handed Cal State Bakersfield, which was the last home game for seniors Molly Hayes, Katya Eadington and Heather Stuart. Hayes paced the Bears with three goals and Stuart grabbed eight saves.

Scouting Long Beach State
The 49ers (15-15 overall, 4-8 in the MPSF) closed the regular season tied for ninth in conference play and are seeded 10th in the tournament. Senior Dayna Wawrzynski leads the 49ers with 63 goals, which is fifth in the MPSF and 20th in the nation. Then-No. 3 Cal used goals from 10 different Bears to defeat the then-No. 13 Beach on March 2, 13-3, at Spieker Aquatics Complex. Cal leads the all-time series with LBSU, 12-7.

Team		Record	Conf.	Games	Goals	G/G	GA	GAA
LBSU		15-15	4-8	30	264	8.8	253	8.43
California	16-9	6-6	25	235	9.4	163	6.52

Hayes Leads Bears in Final Weekend
Molly Hayes scored four goals over the last weekend of play. Friday, Stanford was called for its two ejections within the first three seconds of the game and Hayes capitalized on the six-on-four by converting the man-advantage opportunity at 7:14 of the first period. The Atherton, Calif., native then helped the Bears open the second stanza with two skip-shot goals, the first from Paige Lorenz (5:58) and the second from Hayes (4:29). Hayes took advantage of a fast break one minute into the third period with a goal assisted by Kristin Auker, and then scored off another skip shot 1.5 minutes later. Hayes is second on the team with 41 goals this season.

Last Year at the MPSF Tournament
Cal posted a 2-1 record at the 2007 MPSF Tournament, which was good for seventh place. The Bears kicked off the tournament with a 12-9 loss to Long Beach State but won their last two games of the season against Cal State Northridge (14-10) and host Arizona State (9-8). Julie Oreglia grabbed four goals in the loss to LBSU, Grace Reynolds had five against CSUN, and Molly Hayes paced the Bears with two goals in the victory over ASU.

The Golden Bears in the MPSF
The Bears are currently tied for seventh place in the MPSF at 6-6. Sophomore two-meter Grace Reynolds is 14th in the MPSF with 41 goals (1.78 goals/game). Senior goalie Heather Stuart's work between the posts - 9.46 saves/game - places her second among conference goalies. California's stellar defense is fourth in the MPSF, allowing just 6.52 goals per game, while the Bears are in the upper tier, scoring an average of 9.40 goals/game (sixth). Cal won its first two conference games - UOP and San Jose State - this season for the first time since 2000, when the Bears went on a 7-0 MPSF winning streak at the beginning of conference play.

Cal in the World of U.S. Water Polo
Grace Reynolds is 47th in the nation with 41 goals thus far in the season and senior keeper Heather Stuart's 125 saves are 14th in the national statistics. Additionally, the Bears are fourth in the nation in defense, allowing just 6.4 goals/game. With its wins over then-No. 4 Hawaii on Feb. 23 and No. 3 USC on Feb. 24, Cal won its first games of the 2008 campaign over higher ranked teams. Cal's successful weekend garnered national attention, and the Bears moved from No. 5 in the national poll to No. 3, which marked the highest national ranking for the Bears since February 2001, when they were third.

Cal Tabbed for Third-Place Finish
California was tabbed to tie for third place in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, according to a preseason coaches' poll released Jan. 18. The Golden Bears, tied with Stanford with 107 points, earned one first-place vote. UCLA, which has won three straight national championships and returns three scoring leaders from last season's squad, took first place in the poll with 132 points and 11 first-place votes.

Bears Ink Four Recruits
Four high school recruits have signed national letters of intent to play for Cal Emily Csikos, a member of the Canadian junior national team from 2004-06, is a current senior national team member. Lindsay Dorst, the only United States native to sign a NLI with Cal, is an All-American goalkeeper and member of the USA youth team. Athina Vazeos only began playing water polo five years ago but has quickly transformed into an elite athlete at the national level in Canada and has helped her club team to multiple national championships. Libby McLaren amassed a multitude of awards and championships while playing for Australian club teams and is a standout on the Miramonte High School team.

Bears Record When...
Game decided by 5 goals or less: 8-5
Leading at halftime: 14-0
Trailing at halftime: 1-7
Tied at halftime: 1-2
Went into overtime: 2-0
Leading by 5 or more at halftime: 5-0
Holding opponent under 10 goals: 14-8
Scoring 1-8 goals: 3-9
Scoring 9-15 goals: 11-0
Scoring 16-25 goals: 2-0
Playing a higher-ranked opponent: 2-6
Playing a lower-ranked opponent: 10-3
Playing an unranked opponent: 4-0