The women's water polo team beat No. 2 USC 8-3 at Spieker Pool, and in one fell swoop Cal came up with an important league victory and knocked off the defending national champions.
Goalie Stephanie Peckham, a junior, had a monster of a day for the Bears, coming up with 20 saves against the Trojans. She joined us this afternoon to talk about the victory and her hopes for the team moving forward.
David Seawright: Congratulations on the win on Saturday - what did the "W" mean to you?
Stephanie Peckham: It was the first time I ever beat USC being here. I'm a fourth year so it was awesome. It was so good to see everyone play so hard. It was a really rewarding feeling knowing that we won and we won together, as a team. It was one of my best experiences at Cal so far.
DS: Beating the defending national champions must give you guys a mental edge moving forward. Is that a fair assumption?
SP: Yeah - it was a lot of affirmation that we can beat any team. A lot of people thought USC would beat us, but now we have no doubt that we can win NCAA's if we keep working hard. We have a lot of motivation going into the rest of the season.
DS: It was a big win for the team, but you also came up huge with 20 saves on the day. Where does that rank in your personal accomplishments as a Golden Bear?
SP: That's pretty high up there, but I really didn't think about it during the game. I just wanted to do it for the team. I didn't care about the number of saves I had, I cared about looking at my teammates knowing we beat the defending national champions. It definitely ranked high up there, but I'm proud of everyone. We did well together.
DS: What are your goals moving forward?
SP: Just to get better every day. I want to win every game that we play, go to NCAAs and win and all that stuff, but right now it's just to be better at this practice so we're ready to play this weekend.
DS: What big games do you have remaining here in Berkeley that you'd like fans to check out?
SP: We're playing [current No. 1] Stanford at home. It's our last home game, at 7:00 p.m. on April 16. It's big for us because, obviously, it's Stanford.