Sept. 22, 1997
Bears Host USC at Diablo Valley College
Sat. Sept. 27 vs. USC, Diablo Valley College Pool, Pleasant Hill, CA 10 a.m.
Last Week: The California mens water polo team (5-1) placed third at the Southern California Invitational, Sept. 20-21 in Los Angeles. The Bears defeated No. 13 ranked UC Santa Barbara, 9-2, and No. 10 ranked UC Davis, 18-3, on Saturday. In the semifinal match on Sunday, Cal fell to No. 4 ranked Pepperdine, 8-6. The Bears then rebounded to defeat No. 6 ranked UC Irvine, 12-7, to finish third. It was the second year in a row Cal has placed third at the Southern California Tournament. The Bears outscored their opponents 45-20 over the weekend and in the victory over UC Santa Barbara, Cals defense shutout the Gauchos until 4:45 left in the match. In the win over UC Davis, 13 different players scored goals for the Bears. Against Pepperdine, the Bears had a 5-4 lead with 5:34 left in the third period, but the Waves rattled off four straight goals, including the go-ahead goal with 5:08 left in the match. In the third place match, UC Irvine scored first, but Cal scored the next eight points on the way to the 12-7 win. The Bears will be hosting all of their home water polo matches at DVC this season due to the construction of Haas Pavilion on the Cal campus.
Head Coach Steve Heaston: Steve Heaston is in his ninth year as Cal's head coach with a 194-40 (.829) career record and three national titles ('90, '91, '92). Heaston has guided the Bears to NCAA titles in 1990, 91 and 92 and has been named NCAA Coach of the Year twice (90 and 92) and conference coach of the year five times.
Noting USC: The USC Trojans (ranked No. 2 last week in the are 5-1 overall (0-0 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation) and finished second last weekend at the Southern California Tournament on the USC campus. The Trojans fell to Pepperdine, 8-7, in the title match. USCs leading scorer this season is junior driver Marko Pintaric with 16 points, including one, two-point goal. Last year, the Trojans placed second in the nation, falling to UCLA, 8-7, in the national championship match. The Bears were 0-2 versus USC last season, losing 8-5 at the Southern California Tournament and 10-6 in overtime in Los Angeles. The last time Cal topped USC was Oct. 7, 1995, defeating the Trojans, 12-7 at Cal.
Bear Notes: At the Southern California Tournament, Cal was led by senior two-meter man Brent Albright (Lompoc, CA), who scored 10 points during the tournament, including two, two-point goals. Albright was named first team all-tournament, while senior driver Peter Stern (Lafayette, CA), who scored five goals over the weekend, earned second team all-tournament honors. Another top scorer for the Bears was junior driver Phinney Gardner (San Clemente, CA) with six goals. Gardner sat out most of last season due to injuries suffered in a non-water polo related accident and only scored five goals in 96. He has already scored 10 goals in six matches this year. Cal had 16 different players score during the Southern California Tournament. The Bears will once again be led by Albright, who has now scored 154 points in his Cal career; Stern, a third team All-American last season and a member of the U.S. National Team this past summer and junior Brad Kittredge (Santa Barbara), an honorable mention All-American and the teams leading scorer (38 points) in 96. The Bears also return steady senior Jeff Moloughney (Mission Viejo, CA), who despite injuries throughout his college career has scored 44 goals and sophomore Albert Won (Crenshaw, CA), who as a true freshman had two match-winning scores, scored 25 goals and was named Freshman Athlete of the Year in The Daily Californian.
Noting Cal Water Polo: Since the first NCAA water polo championship in 1969, the Bears have been in the national title match 17 of the 28 years, winning 11 national championships (1973-75, '77, '83-'84, '87-'88, '90, '91, '92). In the history of Cal water polo, the Bears have won 33 conference championships, 11 national championships and have had five NCAA Coaches of the Year, 13 Collegiate Players of the Year, 11 Conference Players of the Year, 134 All-Americans and 21 Olympians.