No. 2 Cal MWP Tops No. 3 UCLA, 8-5
Courtesy: Cal Athletics  
Release:  10/07/2011

Oct. 7, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CALIF - Seniors Ivan Rackov and Zach Greenwood each notched two goals apiece and junior goalie Justin Parsons registered 11 saves as No. 2-ranked Cal (12-2, 1-0) defeated No. 3-ranked UCLA, 8-5, Friday night (Oct. 7) at the Spieker Aquatics Center on the UCLA campus. In the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation league opener for both schools, the Golden Bears broke away from a 3-3 tie at halftime by outscoring the Bruins, 4-1, in the third period behind two Rackov goals, and scores by Greenwood and freshman Aleksa Saponjic.

Senior Charlie Steffens, junior Marin Balarin and redshirt freshman Blake Kelly also produced goals for Cal, who has now won nine-straight MPSF league matches and finishing last season 8-0 in conference. It was the third time the Bears have played the Bruins this season, with Cal losing, 6-5, Sept. 18 at the NorCal Invitational, and winning, 8-4, Oct. 2 at the SoCal Invitational.

Balarin scored the Bears' first goal of the evening with 5:30 left in the opening period, and Greenwood added a goal at 1:59, to give Cal a 2-1 advantage after the first quarter. UCLA came back to tie the match, 2-2, on a power play score by Josh Samuels with 4:03 left in the first half. Kelly answered for the Bears with a goal at 3:25 in the second quarter, only to see Samuels knot the score at 3-3 with a shot from beyond half pool as time ran out in the opening half.

Chris Wendt gave UCLA another goal at 7:11 in the third period to put the Bruins ahead, 4-3. But, after Wendt's score it was all Cal in the third period. Rackov tied the contest, 4-4, on a five meter penalty shot, followed by goals from Saponjic and Greenwood, before another goal by Rackov put the match out of reach.

"We had great team defense tonight," said Cal coach Kirk Everist. "The guys really battled and I was very pleased with our effort."

The Bears will next travel to Long Beach State for another MPSF match, Saturday, Oct. 8 at 2 p.m., before facing UC San Diego in a non-league match on Sunday, Oct. 9 at 12 p.m.

CAL 2 1 4 1 - 8

UCLA 1 2 1 1 - 5

Goals CAL: Ivan Rackov 2, Zach Greenwood 2 Aleksa Saponjic, Marin Balarin, Charlie Steffens, Blake Kelly

UCLA: Samuels 2, Wendt, Hays, Reynolds

Goalkeeper Saves

CAL: Justin Parsons 11

UCLA: Rapacz 4