Skip to main content

No. 4 USC Men's Water Polo Suffers Two Losses At Stanford Round Robin

Feb 20, 2021


STANFORD, CALIF. — The No. 4 USC men's water polo team suffered two MPSF losses today at the Stanford Round Robin. The Trojans led in both, but lost ground, taking a 10-7 loss to No. 1 California and then a 15-9 loss at No. 3 Stanford. USC is now 3-7 overall and 2-7 in MPSF competition.

USC had a strong second period as its defense was stingy and its offense drummed up goals from Tom McGuire — the freshman's first as a Trojan — and Orestis Apergial before Jacob Mercep drilled on to get USC ahead 5-4 but halftime. Cal made a second-half surge, scoring five straight goals across the third and fourth frames to wrest control from the Trojans. USC had led 5-4 at halftime and was up 6-5 in the third on a backhand ripper from Max Miller, but the Bears fired back and worked out ahead 10-6 before USC snapped 11 minutes of scoring silence with Jake Ehrhardt's second blast of the day. That made it 10-7, and USC could get no closer in the final minute as Cal emerged with the win. USC goalie Nic Porter was a force to reckon with throughout, with two of his 14 saves coming against Cal 5-meter penalty shot attempts. 

In the night game, USC again made a good early showing, taking a 2-0 lead on goals from Mercep and later leading it 4-3 in the second after Ehrhardt and Marcus Longton found the back of the net. Longton's 6-on-5 finish off a setup from Carson Kranz got USC that one-goal advantage, only to see Stanford convert back-to-back 6-on-5 opportunities and then get a long one to go before halftime to take the Cardinal ahead 6-4 at the break. Stanford would come up with six goals in the third period to spell doom for the Trojans, who got goals from Max Miller and Ehrhardt while the Cardinal moved ahead 12-6 entering the fourth. There, the teams went goal-for-goal as Stanford held on to win it 15-9.

Tomorrow (Feb. 21), USC will face UCLA at 3:30 p.m. in the Trojans' final game of the event.

STANFORD ROUND ROBIN (Avery Aquatic Center | Stanford, Calif.)

#1 California 10, #4 USC 7
Feb. 20, 2021 | Avery Aquatic Center | Stanford, Calif.
USC  2 - 3 - 1 - 1 = 7
CAL  3 - 1 - 3 - 3 = 10
USC — Jake Ehrhardt 2, Carson Kranz, Tom McGuire, Orestis Apergi, Jacob Mercep, Max Miller.
CAL — Nikolaos Papanikolou 4, Alika Naone 3, Jack Deely 2, Marko Valecic.
SAVES: Nic Porter (USC) 14, Adrian Weinberg (CAL) 13.

#3 Stanford 15, #4 USC 9
Feb. 20, 2021 | Avery Aquatic Center | Stanford, Calif.
USC    3 - 1 - 2 - 3 = 9
STAN   2 - 4 - 6 - 3 = 15
USC —Jacob Mercep 2, Jake Ehrhardt 2, Carson Kranz 2, Marcus Longton, Max Miller, Tom McGuire..
STAN — Tyler Abramson 3, AJ Rossman 3, Beck Jurasius 3, Ethan Parrish, Andrew Churukian,  Quinn Woodhead, Soren Jensen, Jackson Painter, Larsen Weigle.
SAVES: Nic Porter (USC) 8, Andrew Chun (STAN) 13.