Water Polo Heads To California For Four Non-League Contests
Senior Taylor Setness
Sept. 26, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md. – After the Navy Water Polo team was challenged in a difficult weekend of CWPA Southern Division action, the Mids will head to California to be tested by four challenging non-league opponents.
Beginning on Friday, Sept. 27 with #11 Concordia University, the Mids will take on three nationally ranked squads in three days. Contests versus #14 UC San Diego on Friday, #6 UC Santa Barbara on Saturday and Cerritos College on Sunday will round out the set of games facing the Mids.
Last Time Out
The Mids struggled in their opening weekend of CWPA play as two ranked teams and two other receiving votes team left them with an 0-4 mark by Sunday evening. Following a pair of hard-fought and tight defeats versus #18 Bucknell and #13 Princeton at home on Saturday, the Mids went on the road to George Washington and lost a nail-biting 14-13 game before concluding play with a 22-17 setback at Johns Hopkins.
Individually, Carl Dowzicky (So., Collegeville, Pa.) led the Mids with nine goals and two assists in four games, including a five-goal performance at Johns Hopkins. Dowzicky’s 11 points were matched by classmate Lucas MacLellan (Yorba Linda, Calif.), who finished with five goals and six assists over the weekend. Will Weggeland (So., Riverside, Calif.) was another leading producer for Navy as he notched goals in every games and finished with six total in his first action since Sept. 8.
Scouting the Competition
The Mids will have to be on the top of their game this weekend as three of the four teams that they will be competing against are ranked in the CWPA Top 20. For the second straight week, the Mids are in the receiving votes section.
#11 Concordia University:
The Eagles started their season fast and have continued to post impressive victories as they move up the Top 20 rankings. After an upset win over #6 Cal State Long Beach on Sept. 14, Concordia defeated #14 UC San Diego on Sept. 21 by a 15-12 score. In recognition of their early-season success, the Eagles (5-1) jumped from 16 to 11 in the Sept. 25 edition of the national rankings.
All-time, Concordia holds a 2-1 series advantage, including a 14-6 victory in the teams’ most recent meeting on Sept. 4, 2011.
#14 UC San Diego:
The 14th ranked Tritons come into Friday’s contest with an overall record of 6-6. After initially starting its season with a 4-2 mark, UCSD struggled last weekend at the NorCal Tournament dropping three games, including a 15-12 loss to Concordia and a 16-7 loss to UC Santa Barbara.
Jeffrey Jarvis leads the Tritons’ offense with 28 points on 16 goals and 12 assists. Tommy Friedrich and Chase Cockerill also play large roles in UCSD’s offense as Friedrich has a team-high 20 goals scored, while Cockerill has a team-high 20 assists. Goalie Cameron Ravanbach has made 104 saves in the net this season.
UC San Diego holds a 13-8 advantage in the all-time series with Navy with the Mids’ most recent win coming during the 2009 season.
#6 UC Santa Barbara:
Following a 5-0 start to its season over the first two weekends, the Gauchos come into their matchup with their Mids on Saturday with a 7-2 overall record. Competing in Berkeley, Calif. on Sept. 21 and 22, UCSB went 2-2 versus four ranked opponents with wins over UC San Diego and Long Beach and setbacks against UCLA and Pacific.
The Gauchos are led by the high-scoring duo of Derek Shoemaker and Matt Gronow, who have scored 23 and 22 goals, respectively. In goal, Chris Whitelegge has allowed just 41 goals and made 102 saves in nine games of action.
The Mids’ have struggled in their all-time series with the Gauchos as UCSB holds an 8-1 advantage; Navy’s only win came during the 2005 season.
The Falcons will come into Sunday morning’s matchup after a competing in a weekend full of tournament action at the Cal Lutheran and San Diego Mesa meets. Currently Cerritos is 4-3 overall with a three-game winning streak.
The Falcons are led offensively by Miguel Garcia, who has 18 goals and two assists, while Alfredo De La Mora backstops the squad in net with 65 saves.
Navy and Cerritos have one prior meeting, a September 2012 matchup in Annapolis as part of the Navy Open. The Mids defeated the Falcons 22-9.
Quoting the Coach
Associate Head Coach Stanicic on this weekend’s slate of competition…
“This weekend's competition is going to be really tough as all the teams that we're playing are ranked except for one. We will go into this weekend with all of our players back off the injured list and ready to play. Getting all of our healthy players back into rhythm will be of the upmost importance moving forward, but these games will help us accomplish that and provide a great way to prepare for league play in two weeks.”