Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
LOS ANGELES, Calif. – The Whittier College Men's Water Polo team had a solid sweep Saturday taking out Caltech (21-9) and Occidental (19-7).
The Purple & Gold continue to roll as they remain undefeated in Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) play at 10-0. They also improve to 14-11 on the season and have now won four in a row and seven of their last eight.
Game 1 (Caltech; W, 21-9)
It was a big 1st Quarter for the Poets outscoring the Beavers 8-1. This set the pace as Whittier added another six in the 2nd Quarter to take a 14-3 lead at the break. Dominick Nevarez (Norwalk, Calif.) added the first two goals of the game and was followed by Eric Borunda (Whittier, Calif.), Maxwell Murphy (Orinda, Calif.), Carlos Heredia Viteri (Commerce, Calif.), Cornelis Kriek (Pretoria, South Africa), and Enrico Antunes (Sao Paulo, Brazil). In the second frame Patrick Seelhorst added two of the first three strikes with Mackenzie Aakhus tacking on his first of the game in between both. At the 4:23 mark freshman Matthew Townsend (Naperville, Ill.) converted a 5-Meter and Malcolm Niskey (El Cajon, Calif.) and Jesus Padilla (Commerce, Calif.) finished things off with a pair of even goals.
Out of the break Caltech found their offense outscoring Whittier 4-2. The two strikes coming from Heredia Viteri and Chad Portugal (La Habra Heights, Calif.). Then across the final 8:00 minutes it was all Whittier finishing things off with a solid five-goal run from Seelhorst, Portugal, Townsend, and Niskey that put the game away.
Whittier outshot Caltech 37-30 and was 2-for-7 on power plays. Murat Ersoz got the start between the posts returning from injury and played limited minutes but tallied nine stops with four steals. Eliott Bergerson (Whittier, Calif.) came in relief and added a stop.
Game 2 (Occidental; W, 19-7)
Following the game Whittier had to travel to Occidental College to take on the Tigers but that match-up also ended in a lopsided affair. For the second straight game Whittier had a huge opening quarter outscoring Occidental 4-1. Micah Kamai (Irvine, Calif.) and Murphy got things going quickly and Hans Zdolsek (Linkoping, Sweden) and Nevarez wrapped up the frame. In the 2nd Quarter things got worse for OXY as Whittier tacked on another seven goals to take an 11-2 lead at the break. They started the period off with five straight from Zdolsek, Murphy, Kamai, Heredia Viteri, and Nevarez. Then right before the break Antunes and Paul Pittion (Aix en Provenca, France) converted a pair of 6-on-5s that stretched the lead.
Oxy came out tough in the 3rd Quarter holding the edge 4-3, but a strong 5-1 effort by the Purple & Gold over the final 8:00 minutes would put the game out of reach. Tallies in the second half came from Zdolsek, Nevarez, Heredia Viteri, Antunes, and Toby Chung (La Canada, Calif.).
Whittier was outshot by Occidental 32-29, but was solid on power plays going 6-for-8. Dylan Woodhouse (Harare, Zimbabwe) got the start between the posts and played all 32:00 minutes finishing with 13 saves. Nevarez finished the game with five goals. Zdolsek added four goals and an assist and Murphy tacked on two goals, two assists and a steal.
Whittier has a big week coming up. They open with a road match-up against Claremont-M-S on Wednesday, November 6 (7:00pm) and then return home on Saturday, November 9 to host Pomona-Pitzer beginning at 4:00pm.