49ers play two big conference games this weekend
Oct. 27, 2010
ON THE SCHEDULE
LBSU vs. PEPPERDINE
LBSU at UCLA
NEXT UP FOR THE BEACH
The No. 8 Long Beach State men's water polo team has two Mountain Pacific Sports Federation conference games on the schedule for this weekend. In the first match-up, The Beach returns home to play its Gold Game against No. 10 Pepperdine (8-11, 0-4) at 7 p.m. on Friday at 49er pool in Long Beach, Calif. In their second game of the weekend, the 49ers (7-8, 0-2) go on the road to face No. 3 UCLA (12-3, 3-1) at 12 p.m. on Sunday at Spieker Aquatics Center in Los Angeles, Calif.
Friday's game between Long Beach State and Pepperdine could have postseason implications. With nine teams in the MPSF conference vying for eight spots in the end of the year tournament, someone inevitably has to go home dissapointed. So far in 2010, neither team has won an MPSF conference game. That makes this game equally important to both schools because the winner of this pivotal match-up will most likely be the team that plays in the MPSF Tournament, while the loser will probably end up sitting out. The 49ers sat out last year - for the first time under head coach Gavin Arroyo. This year's squad can almost guarantee that it won't happen again with a victory over the Waves at home on Friday night.
LAST WEEK AT UC SANTA BARBARA
The Beach lost its second MPSF game of the year to No. 6 UC Santa Barbara 11-10 in sudden victory at UCSB on Saturday, October 23. With the loss, Long Beach State fell to 7-8 on the year and 0-2 in MPSF conference play. After taking a 6-4 lead into halftime, the 49ers opened up a 10-7 fourth period advantage over UC Santa Barbara with six minutes left to play in the game. The Gauchos battled back with three goals to send the game into overtime tied at 10-10. After two scoreless overtime periods, UC Santa Barbara's Milos Golic found the back of the cage in sudden victory to give the Gauchos their first conference win. Patrick van der Linde, Carter Taylor and Dan Matulis each scored two goals in the loss to lead the 49ers in scoring. Goalie Matt Kubeck finished with a game-high 12 saves and Nick Rascon's scoring streak ended at 14 games.
49ers vs. WAVES
In the first meeting of the year between Long Beach State and Pepperdine, the 49ers emerged victorious after pulling out an 11-10 win in sudden victory at the SoCal Tournament hosted by UCLA. The non-conference match-up was the only meeting between the two squads this season and the first win by LBSU over Pepperdine since 2008. The Beach lost both of its match-ups with Pepperdine in 2009.
A CLOSER LOOK AT PEPPERDINE
Pepperdine comes into this game at 8-11 for the year and 0-4 in MPSF conference play. In their last two conference games, the Waves lost at home to Stanford 15-6 and on the road to Pacific 7-5. Pepperdine suffered its two other conference losses at home to UC Irvine and USC. Danny White leads the team in scoring with 27 goals and ranks second in steals with 22. James Perry is second in scoring with 19 goals, followed by three players tied with 17 each. Travis Gough leads the team with 24 assists and 30 steals and Nate Castillo ranks second on the team in assists with 22. Goalie Bence Valics has 105 saves and an 8.42 goals-against per-game average. Through 19 games this season, the Waves are outscoring their opponents 184-164.
49ers vs. BRUINS
The Halloween match-up between Long Beach State and UCLA will be the first meeting between the two schools in 2010. The Bruins come into the game with a 68-19-1 all-time series lead against the the 49ers. LBSU's last win over UCLA came at the SoCal Tournament in 2003.
A CLOSER LOOK AT UCLA
No. 3 UCLA heads into this match-up with a 12-3 overall record and 3-1 mark in MPSF action. The Bruins are tied with Stanford for second place in the MPSF standings after losing their first conference game at No. 1 Cal, then rolling off three straight MPSF victories over Pacific, Stanford and UC Irvine. Ben Hohl leads the team in scoring with 28 goals. Cristiano Mirarchi is second with 22, followed by Josh Samuels and Griffin White with 17 each. Hohl has scored four goals in a game twice this year while White has netted a hat trick in two games so far. Three goalies have been sharing time in the cage for UCLA this season. James Hartshorne has recorded 57 saves in his six starts, Andrew Mesean has collected 56 saves in his six starts while Matt Rapacz has 16 stops in his three starts this year. As a team, the Bruins are outscoring their opponents 161-110 in 2010. They hold a 78-45 first half advantage and a 83-65 edge in the second half of play.