Nov. 17, 1997
Bears Travel to Stanford tor the Big Splash
Sat. Nov. 22 at Stanford, deGuerre Pool, Stanford, CA 10 a.m.
The California men's water polo team (19-5, 7-1 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play, ranked No. 4 last week in the Coaches Top-20 poll) defeated No. 9 ranked UC Santa Barbara, 11-5, Sunday at Diablo Valley College. The Bears jumped out to a 11-0 lead and did not allow the Gauchos to score a goal until 2:40 left in the third quarter. The victory over UC Santa Barbara gives Cal a final 7-1 league record and a No. 2 seed at the MPSF Tournament Nov. 27-30 in Long Beach. The winner of MPSF Tournament receives the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, Dec. 5 and 7 at the International Swimming Hall of Fame in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Cal's only league loss came to No. 1 ranked Pepperdine, 6-4, Oct. 11 at Pepperdine.
HEAD COACH STEVE HEASTON:
Steve Heaston is in his ninth year as Cal's head coach with a 208-44 (.825) 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). Cal's victory over UMass on Oct. 17 of this season was Heaston's 200th career victory.
NOTING CAL-STANFORD RIVALRY:
The Stanford Cardinal (ranked No. 2 last week in the Top-20 poll) are 17-5 overall and 6-2 in MPSF play this season. Last weekend, the Cardinal defeated No. 13 ranked UC Davis, 12-9, and No. 3 ranked USC, 9-5, at Stanford. The Cardinal are led by sophomore Brian Heifferon with 31 points, including four, two-point goals. In the only other meeting between Cal and Stanford this season, the Bears defeated the Cardinal in a conference match, 7-4, Oct. 3 at Diablo Valley College.
In the decade of the '90s, Cal leads the series 20-8, including defeating Stanford in the 1990 (8-7) and 1992 (12-11 in sudden death overtime) NCAA title match. Since 1980, either the Bears or Stanford have captured the national title, with the exception of 1982 and 1989 (UC Irvine), and 1995 when UCLA defeated Cal, 10-8, in the NCAA final and 1996 when the Bruins defeated USC for the national title. Since 1969, Cal has won 11 NCAA Tournaments and the Cardinal seven. Cal and Stanford have faced each other six times in the NCAA title match, with each school winning three national championships versus its Bay Area rival.
In the victory over UC Santa Barbara, Cal jumped out to a 11-0 lead behind three goals by senior captain Brent Albright (Lompoc, CA) and coasted to the win. Other top scorers for the Bears were senior Jeff Moloughney (Mission Viejo, CA) and junior Ryan Flynn (Los Angeles, CA) with two goals apiece. Junior Phinney Gardner (San Clemente, CA), senior Ramsey Ross (Novato, CA), freshman Eldad Hazor (Tivon, Israel) and sophomore Albert Won (Crenshaw, CA) also tallied goals for Cal.
The Bears have shown outstanding depth this season with nine different players having scored 13 or more goals. Gardner continues to lead the Bears in scoring with 36 points (one, two-point goal), followed by Albright with 35 points (three, two-point goals). Albright, a three-time All-American and the Sept. 29 MPSF Player of the Week, has been a clutch player for Cal this year. He made a four-meter penalty shot in overtime for the 9-8 win at UCLA Oct. 25, and has also led the Bears to two victories over USC this season. Albright scored with nine second left against the Trojans Oct. 12 in Los Angeles to send the match into overtime (Cal won 10-8), and he scored the match-winning goal with 1:19 left to break a 8-8 tie and lead the Bears to their first victory over the Trojans since 1995 Sept. 27 at DVC. Albright now has 174 career points. Cal has outscored its opponents 251-137 this season.
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.