Sept. 27, 1997
No. 3 Bears Defeat No. 2 ranked USC, 9-8
PLEASANT HILL, Calif. The No. 3 ranked California men's water polo team defeated No. 2 ranked USC, 9-8, Saturday in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill.
Cal two-meter man Brent Albright scored a goal with 1:19 left in the match to break a 8-8 tie and lead the Bears in a key MPSF match. Cal now improves to 6-1 on the year and 2-0 in MPSF competition, while USC falls to 5-2 and 0-1 in conference.
The Bears were barely able to fend-off a furious comeback by the Trojans. Cal had an 8-5 advantage entering the fourth quarter, but USC outscored the Bears, 3-1, in the final period. Allen Basso, who led USC with three points, knocked in a two-point shot with 5:40 in the fourth period to get the Trojans within 8-7. USC then tied the match with 2:13 left on a goal by Marko Pintaric. Both teams had chances to take the lead in regulation. After Cal had missed a two-point shot with about two minutes to go, the Trojans threw the ball away on a counterattack, giving the ball back to the Bears and setting up Albrights winning score. Cal goalie Peter Kiefer had a nice save on a USC shot with 27 seconds left in the contest to preserve the win.
The Bears will next host Bay Area rival Stanford, Friday, Oct. 3 at 5 p.m. at Diablo Valley College. All of the Bears water polo matches will be played at Diable Valley College due to the construction on Haas Pavilion on the Cal campus.
USC 2 1 2 3 --8 California 4 2 2 1 --9 USC: Basso 3 (one, two-point goal), Castle 2, Pintaric 2, Hornos 1. California: Albright 3, Kittredge 2, Won 2, Flynn 1, Moloughney 1. Saves: Kiefer 8 (Cal), McEvoy 6 (USC). Records: California 6-1, USC 5-2