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No. 3 UCLA Advances to MPSF Championship Game

Nov 20, 2021
Graduate Nicolas Saveljic led all scorers with a hat trick in the Bruins' win over the Trojans.

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LOS ANGELES -- No. 3 UCLA (18-3) advanced to the MPSF Championship with a 6-5 win over No. 2 USC (16-2) on Saturday afternoon at Stanford's Avery Aquatic Center. With the defensive win over the Trojans, UCLA improved to 91-88-1 in the series history.

Graduate Nicolas Saveljic led all scorers with three goals. He was the only Bruin to score multiple goals.

Junior Bernardo Maurizi got the start in the cage and went the distance, registering seven saves. Maurizi and the Bruin defense held USC to just five goals and 0-for-11 on power play opportunities.

> Both teams played to a 3-3 draw in the opening period.
> Junior Tommy Gruwell got the Bruins on the board first with a power play goal that was assisted by graduate Chasen Travisano (7:23).
> Freshman Chase Dodd converted a penalty shot (2:16) that put the Bruins up 2-1.
> Saveljic scored on a power play (0:50) that was assisted by sophomore Guillermo Ocasio to put UCLA up 3-2.
> The Bruins outscored the Trojans 3-1 in the second period.
> The Bruins scored the first two goals of the second quarter on power plays to lead 5-3. Saveljic scored his second of the game (6:27) and redshirt freshman Gianpiero Di Martire netted his first (3:11) with Gruwell assisting on both goals.
> After a goal by the Trojans, Saveljic completed his hat trick with a penalty shot conversion (0:39) to end the scoring in the period with the Bruins leading 6-4 at the break.
> The Bruins were held scoreless in the third quarter.
> UCLA's defense had a solid quarter holding the Trojans to just one late goal (1:36) by Wyatt Barker, his second of the game.

> Both teams battled to a 0-0 draw in the last frame to provide the 6-5 final.
> UCLA was 0-for-4 on power plays in the final period while USC was 0-for-2.

The Bruins will face No. 4 Stanford in the title match after the Cardinal upset top-seeded California in overtime. The game is slated for 2:45 p.m. PT on Sunday, Nov. 21. The winner will earn the automatic bid into the NCAA Championship, which UCLA is hosting Dec. 2-5.

No. 3 UCLA vs. No. 2 USC (MPSF Championship - Semifinals)

No. 3 UCLA 3 3 0 0 6
No. 2 USC 3 1 1 0 5

6x5 - UCLA - 3/12 - USC - 0/11
Penalties - UCLA - 2/2 - USC - 1/1

UCLA Goals: Nicolas Saveljic 3, Tommy Gruwell 1, Chase Dodd 1, Gianpiero Di Martire 1
UCLA Saves: Bernardo Maurizi 7

USC Goals: Wyatt Barker 2, Hannes Daube 1, Alexander Lansill 1, Marcus Longton 1
USC Saves: Nic Porter 12