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No. 2 Bears Pull Away From No. 7 UC Davis For Win

Oct 12, 2022
Max Casabella led the Bears with four goals on Wednesday.

BERKELEY – The No. 2 Cal men's water polo team overcame a three-goal halftime deficit and beat No. 7 UC Davis 16-12 on Wednesday evening at Spieker Aquatics Complex.

The Bears (13-1) outscored the Aggies 10-3 in the second half and got a big fourth quarter from All-American Max Casabella, who scored three of his four goals in the final period and also added a steal and earned exclusion.

Sophomore Roberto Valera had a terrific all-around game with two goals, three assists, three steals and three earned exclusions while defending National Player of the Year Nikolaos Papanikolaou had two goals and six earned exclusions. All-American Jack Deely added two goals and three assists.

The Bears fell behind 5-3 at the end of the first quarter then scored three straight goals to take their first lead of the game. But UC Davis answered and built a 9-6 halftime advantage.

Cal turned up the defense in the second half, tied it at 10-10 at the end of the third quarter and rolled to the win in the final period.

The Bears now turn their attention to a Saturday showdown against No. 5 USC in their MPSF opener in Berkeley. Cal defeated the Trojans 13-12 in last season's NCAA championship match and beat them 11-10 at last month's MPSF Invitational.

No. 2 Cal 16, No. 7 UC Davis 12
UCD 5 4 1 2 - 12
Cal 3 3 4 6 - 16

UC Davis Goals: Aleix Aznar Beltran 4, Tyler Mrkaich 2, Aaron Voggenthaler 2, Will Normura, Colin Nichols, Holden Neach.
Cal Goals: Max Casabella 4, Roberto Valera 2, Nikolaos Papanikolaou 2, Garrett Dunn 2, Marton Szatmary 2, Jack Deely 2, Jake Howerton, Jake Stone.
UC Davis Saves: Aaron Wilson 12.
Cal Saves: Adrian Weinberg 4.