Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
CLAREMONT, Calif. – The Whittier College Women's Water Polo team had a tough second day of the Claremont Convergence Saturday as they dropped both contests to Cal State Monterey Bay (12-9) and UC San Diego (17-2).
All four match-ups for the Purple & Gold on the weekend came against scholarship programs from Division I and Division II. The first day they took on Division I St. Francis University and Division II Sonoma State. Then on Day 2 they took on Division II Cal State Monterey Bay and Division I UC San Diego.
Game 1 (Cal State Monterey Bay; L, 12-9)
The Sea Otters exacted revenge on the Poets from their previous meeting where the Purple & Gold won 10-9 during the Whittier Mini-Tournament. This time it was Cal State Monterey Bay using a big second half to pull off the three-goal victory.
The Sea Otters edged the Poets 3-2 over the first eight minutes. It was scoreless over the first four until CSMB would tack on the go-ahead goal. Hannah Rodriguez (Riverside, Calif.) and Anastacia Gonzalez (Montebello, Calif.) would go back-to-back over the next :45 seconds to put WC on top but that lead wouldn't hold as the Sea Otters would add another two that gave them the one goal advantage.
In the second Whittier shutout the Sea Otters and tied the game up at the half thanks to Veronica Ramirez (La Habra, Calif.). Jacqueline Au (Pacific Palisades, Calif.) got the scoring started in the second half putting the Poets on top 4-3. But immediately following CSMB found their offense rattling off three unanswered that swung the momentum. Ana Alumbaugh (Honolulu, HI) stopped the run with 3:16 to play in the quarter to keep the deficit at one but again the Sea Otters would respond with another strike this time with :36 seconds remaining that made the score 7-5.
In the final frame, a combined nine goals would be added with CSMB holding the 5-4 advantage. Au started the period off with an unassisted goal that pulled WC within one but that's as close as Whittier would get as Cal State Monterey Bay would add the next five that stretched the lead to five.
The purple & Gold tried to make a comeback with the final three connections coming from Au and Kaitlin Vera (Fullerton, Calif.) but it wouldn't be enough as CSMB would hold on for the three-goal victory.
Lauren Mauge (Hanford, Calif.) played between the posts for the Poets collecting four saves and six steals in 32:00 of action.
Whittier outshot Cal State Monterey Bay 25-21, was 0-6 on power play opportunities, and missed two five-meter penalties, which proved costly in the end.
Game 2 (UC San Diego; L, 17-2)
The Poets ended the Convergence with a tough match-up against the Tritons of UC San Diego. UCSD outscored the Poets 9-1 in the first half with the lone goal from WC coming from Lindsay Shoaff (Costa Mesa, Calif.), which came at the 7:18 mark of the first quarter and was the first tally of the game for either team.
Whittier added their second goal of the game in the third quarter from Alumbaugh but that was the last offense generated as the Tritons would use a 5-0 fourth quarter to pick up the victory.
Mauge played in goal all 32:00 and collected six steals.
Whittier was outshot on the game 19-17 and was 0-4 on power play opportunities.
Whittier (1-7, 0-1 SCIAC) returns to the pool tomorrow night, Monday, March 5 when they host Division I Villanova University beginning at 7:00pm.