Saratoga, Calif.----- The San Jose State University women's water polo team defeated Cal State East Bay, 13-5, and lost to #11-ranked UC Davis, 11-8, as hosts of the Lou Tully Memorial Invitational to open its 2018 season.
The Spartans, ranked 15th in the first Collegiate Water Polo Association's coaches poll, controlled the season opener from start to finish. San Jose State scored the first six goals of the match over 12:29. Senior Klaudia Paradi, junior Sheila Jensen and freshman Lilu Urvari each scored a pair for the Spartans before goals by Leilani Vazquez and Brooke Hodgkingson cut Cal State East Bay's deficit to 6-2, the closest the Pioneers would get the entire contest.
Jensen finished with four goals to lead all players. In her Spartan debut, junior Guara Garcia Delgado scored three times in the second half. Paradi and Urvari were San Jose State's other two multi-goal scorers with their two each in the early Spartan rally.
An effective power play, 5-of-10 vs. Cal State East Bay, was not as proficient in the loss to #11-ranked UC Davis. San Jose State was 2-of-10 compared to UC Davis' 5-of-12.
"We missed a penalty shot and had challenges with our shooting. We were below 30 percent (8-for-28 in the UC Davis match). We had good looks. We just "barred out" too many times," said San Jose State women's water polo head coach Gabor Sarusi.
After Jensen opened the UC Davis match with the match's first goal, the Aggies took a 5-1 lead converting on four power play opportunities. San Jose State closed to 5-4 early in the third quarter after Paradi scored a power play goal. The Spartans were unable to handle UC Davis' Annie Kutt who scored all three of her goals in the third and helped the Aggies stay ahead. After her second goal of the match at the 5:28 mark gave UC Davis an 8-5 lead, the teams traded scores to the end.
Thompson was in goal the entire way against UC Davis and was credited with 11 saves. UC Davis goalkeeper Caitlin Golding was credited with seven stops.
Paradi's three goals against the Aggies were tops by a Spartan and gave her five on the day. Jensen also finished the day with five to share team day-high honors with Paradi. Urvari, a freshman from Hungary, put away her second pair of goals against UC Davis in a busy debut.
"Our effort was great. I was happy with the effort from all of our players, but we made `young' mistakes and we couldn't convert in the second game (UC Davis). We have plenty of room for improvement," Saursi added.
"I felt like our halfcourt defense was decent. I was happy with our two-meter defense. Unfortunately, when we turned the ball over on offense, the other team is countering us really well. It's kind of like our offense is costing us man-down situations on defense. We need to improve on that, our turnovers and cut down on their 2-on-1 and 3-on-2 situations."
San Jose State returns to action, January 27, in Berkeley, Calif., playing in the Cal Cup hosted by the University of California. The Spartans take on #6-UC Irvine at 8:30 a.m. and first-year program Fresno State at 12:15 p.m. and has two more matches the next day. One is against defending NCAA champion and #1-ranked Stanford at 2:15 p.m.
|Other scores in the 4th annual Lou Tully Memorial Invitational|
|#1-Stanford 15, #11-UC Davis 3|
|China 19, Pacific 4 (exhibition)|
|Stanford 5, China 5 (exhibition tie, no overtime)|
|Pacific 21, Cal State East Bay 7 (exhibition)|
|China 17, UC Davis 5 (exhibition)|