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No. 3 USC Women’s Water Polo Rings Up 16-3 Win Over No. 15 Indiana

Mar 12, 2022

LOS ANGELES — The No. 3 USC women's water polo team unleashed an all-out attack balanced by stingy defense to ring up a 16-3 win over No. 15 Indiana in an MPSF meeting at Uytengsu Aquatics Center today. Bayley Weber and Grace Tehaney tallied four goals apiece on the offensive end, each outscoring the Hoosiers' team total, while USC goalies Carolyne Stern and Erin Tharp combined for 13 saves. Tharp put an exclamation point on the game by turning away three consecutive 5-meter penalty shots in the fourth period. The win improves USC to 12-2 overall and to 2-0 in MPSF action.

Stern opened the game with a save against an Indiana power play, and then USC hammered home four straight scores. Two of those came courtesy of Weber, and then USC would tally two more after Indiana's first  goal of the day to lead it 6-1 after eight minutes of action. The pace slowed a bit in the second frame, although Weber and Tehaney would keep firing. Both had hat tricks in place by halftime as USC was up 9-2 at the break.

The Trojans would silence the Hoosiers in the third, nabbing steals on the defensive end and then rattling in scores the other way. Paige Hauschild hit her third of the day with a finish off a pop-out from Tilly Kearns, who would also draw three 5-meter penalty shots for the Trojans on the day. Freshman Honnie Vandeweghe-O'Shea slotted back-to-back goals next, and then Weber had the final word of the third off a 5-meter penalty drawn by Kearns to lift USC ahead 13-2 entering the fourth. That's where Tharp took over the cage from Stern, backing up a still-stubborn Trojan defense with six saves — three of which came  against 5-meter penalty shots in an feat rarely, if ever, seen in the water polo world. Only one Hoosier backhand would get through, while USC piled on three more scores to round out the 16-3 final victory.

USC now heads off to Honolulu for a Spring Break training trip that will also feature a game act Hawai'i on Friday (March 18).

#3 USC 16, #15 Indiana 3
March 12, 2022 | Uytengsu Aquatics Center  (Los Angeles, Calif.)
USC    6 - 3  - 4 - 3 = 16
IU        1  - 1 - 0 -  1 = 3

USC — Bayley Weber 4, Grace Tehaney 4, Paige Hauschild 3, Mireia Guiral 2, Honnie Vandeweghe-O'Shea 2, Claire Haas.
IU — Sophia Sollie, Skylar Kidd, Izzy Mandema.

SAVES: Carolyne Stern (USC) 7, Erin Tharp (USC)6 [4th period], Mary Askew (IU) 8, Sarah Greeven (IU) 1 [4th  period]