Water Polo Opens Conference Play With Dub Over No. 12 SJSU
SAN JOSÉ, Calif. – No. 10 Sun Devil Water Polo (10-7, 1-0) opened Mountain Pacific Sport Federation conference play with an 11-10 win over No. 12 San José State (10-9, 0-1). Graduate center Amira Van Buren led all scorers with her season-high five goals and notched her 11th multi-goal game of the season.
"We were really good, masterful in the first half," noted Head Coach Todd Clapper, after his team outscored San José State 7-3 in the first half.
ASU held SJSU to just a 29% shooting percentage with 10 goals on 34 shots. The Sun Devils were excluded eight times today, with three of those coming in the final minutes of the game, to the Spartan's nine exclusions. In those final minutes, the Sun Devil defense held off a last-minute 4-1 SJSU run to secure their 10th win of the season.
Clapper spoke on SJSU's second half push, "San Jose came out with greater intensity in the second and I think that maybe we sat back on our lead, but we had some nice stops late and secured the win."
After setting a program single-game scoring record with eight goals against IU last weekend, freshman attacker Vanda Baksa had her ninth game with 3+ goals after tallying three today. Her two assists gave her five points on the day and she now sits at second all-time with 74 points as a freshman (48G-26A) behind Rowie Webster's 82. Her 48 goals are fourth most among freshman in program history, and the most by a freshman since Anna Kertes' 47 in 2012.
The Sun Devils travel to Stanford tomorrow for their second conference game of the season to face No. 1 Stanford (11-1). The game will be streamed here at 2:00 pm MST.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Amira Van Buren got the Devils on the board first not even a minute into the game, and SJSU evened it at one near the 4 minute mark. The Sun Devils were down 2-1, but it did not last for long with Emily Bennett's equalizer to tie the game at two. Shots were traded to end the opening quarter, but ASU headed into the second quarter tied at two.
Van Buren netted two goals in the first minute of the second quarter to give ASU the 4-2 lead. Vanda Baksa, Lara Kiss, and Luca Petovary each added a goal of their own for some Sun Devil insurance to cap the 5-0 ASU run. SJSU's first goal of the second quarter came with 3:08 remaining in the frame, as the defense held the Spartans to just three goals on 17 shots to take the 7-3 lead into the half.
The Spartans struck first to open the third with an early girl to pull within three. Baksa assisted Van Buren's fourth goal of the day to set the lead back to four. Baksa netted her second goal of the day to extend the lead to 9-4, and she immediately drew an SJSU exclusion on the next possession. Baksa netted her third goal while the Sun Devils were a man up for her ninth hat trick of the season– good for the 10-4 lead. SJSU manages to get a few goals back in the final minutes of the quarter after the GK's penalty shot save, but ASU takes the 10-6 lead into the final frame.