Sept. 16, 2007
BERKELEY, CALIF. - In a match-up between the two teams involved in last year's NCAA title match, the No. 2-ranked California men's water polo team (9-1) was edged by No. 1-ranked USC, 9-8, Sunday in the final of the 2007 NorCal Open, held at Spieker Aquatics Complex. The Trojans captured the NorCal Open when Gabor Surusi capitalized on a five-meter penalty shot with five seconds left in the match. In a scramble at two-meters, Cal's Jeff Tyrrell was called for fouling USC's Tommy Corcoran, setting up Surusi's match-winning score.
The Bears and the Trojans showed why they are the top two college water polo teams in the nation as the contest went down to the final seconds. Sarusi had scored on a 6-5 man-up advantage goal with 4:42 left in the match to give USC a 7-6 lead. Cal surged ahead when Tyrrell scored off a fine assist from Zac Monsees with 4:17 in the fourth period, and Michael Sharf tipped in a goal to give the Bears' an 8-7 lead with 2:39 left. But the Trojans scored 10 seconds later on a quick shot by Nico Sardo to tie the match, 8-8, and then were able to convert on the final penalty shot as time ran down.
Sharf led Cal with three goals in the championship match, tallying two goals in the first period - one on a five-meter penalty shot to start the day's scoring. Senior Adam Haley chipped in goals in the first and second periods, and Vladislav Andreyev and Monsees also scored for the Bears. Senior goalie Mark Sheredy had a match-high 11 saves.
Cal had advanced to the championship match after defeating No. 3-ranked UCLA, 10-8, in the semifinals. The Bears came back from a 2-1 first period deficit by outscoring the Bruins, 5-2, in the second quarter behind a pair of goals from Sharf and Monsees, and goal from redshirt freshman Brian Dudley. Haley was also a key player in the victory over UCLA, recording six steals and four assists, while Sheredy notched 10 saves, including blocking a five-meter penalty shot in the first period. Monsees and Sharf led Cal's offensive attack with four goals apiece.
"We played very hard against UCLA," said Everist after the semifinal. "I was pleased with the contributions of our younger players. Scott Cruikshank gave us some great minutes and Brian Dudley came in and gave us a goal and an assist that was huge. Michael Sharf and Zac Monsees came up big on offense and Adam Haley's defense and four assists were big for us."
Cal will next host an Alumni match on Saturday, Sept. 22 at 11:30 a.m. at Spieker Aquatics Complex. For complete results of the NorCal Open, go to the men's water polo page on www.calbears.com and look for the 2007 NorCal Open schedule button.
2007 NorCal Open Championship Match
MATCH 31 (Championship)
USC 9, California 8
California 3 2 1 2 - 8
USC 3 2 1 3 - 9
USC - Gabor Sarusi 3, Drew Vyn, Anthony Artukovich, Nico Sardo, Justin Rappel, Jovan Vranes, Jordan Thompson.
Saves - California - Mark Sheredy 11.
USC - Adam Shiling 3.
Records: USC 5-0, California 9-1
Semifinal Cal 10, UCLA 8
UCLA 2 2 2 2 - 8
Cal 1 5 3 1 - 10
Goals - UCLA - Justin Johnson 2, Kevin Kuga 2, Christopher Allen, Scott Davidson, Ben Hohl, Matthew Jacobs.
Saves - UCLA - Chay Lapin 7.
Cal - Mark Sheredy 10.
2007 NorCal Open Day Two results (Sept. 16)
Navy 11, UC Santa Cruz 5
UC Irvine 12, Long Beach State 9
Air Force 11, Santa Clara 4
Pepperdine 13, UC Santa Barbara 12
UC San Diego 14, Pacific 9
USC 9, Stanford 5
UC Davis 7, Loyola Marymount 5
California 10, UCLA 8
Santa Clara 16, UC Santa Cruz 7 (15th Place)
Navy 11, Air Force 4 (13th Place)
Loyola Marymount 8, Pacific 5 (11th Place)
UC Davis 13, UC San Diego 7 (Ninth Place)
Long Beach State 10, UC Santa Barbara 9 (Seventh Place)
Pepperdine 11, UC Irvine 8 (Fifth Place)
UCLA 13, Stanford 9 (Third Place)
USC 9, California 8 (Championship)
2007 NorCal Open Day One results (Sept. 15)
Cal 14, Air Force 4
UC Santa Barbara 10, Loyola Marymount 4
UCLA 15, Santa Clara 4
Pepperdine 13, UC Davis 5
Loyola Marymount 13, Air Force 5
Cal 10, UC Santa Barbara 5
UC Davis 8, Santa Clara 6
USC 22, UC Santa Cruz 0
Long Beach State 9, UC San Diego 6
Stanford 14, Pacific 9
UC Irvine 13, Navy 12
UC San Diego 16, UC Santa Cruz 9
USC 10, Long Beach State 5
Pacific 15, Navy 11
UCLA 7, Pepperdine 5 OT
Stanford 11, UC Irvine 9 OT