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No. 8 Water Polo Suffers Two Losses at UCSD Invite

SDSU dropped a pair of games on the final day of the UCSD Triton Invitational.
SDSU dropped a pair of games on the final day of the UCSD Triton Invitational.

Feb. 9, 2014

SAN DIEGO - Eighth-ranked San Diego State suffered a pair of upset losses on the final day of the UCSD Triton Invitational on Sunday. The Aztecs were upended by No. 13 Indiana, 10-6, and by No. T-16 UC Santa Barbara in overtime, 7-6.

Against the Hoosiers, SDSU fell behind 3-0 after one quarter and were down 4-0 before Caroline Israels dented the scoreboard. The Aztecs, however, could not muster anything offensively and allowed two more Indiana goals to head into halftime trailing, 5-1.

In the third quarter, San Diego State came alive starting with an Alyssa Diacono goal. That led to single goals from Taelor Moreno and Anique Hermann on consecutive possessions to bring the Aztecs to within one goal. SDSU leveled the score when Moreno added another goal with 3:15 left and 22 seconds later, the Scarlet and Black found itself ahead, 6-5, when Ioli Benekou tickled the twine. Unfortunately for the Aztecs, their defense could not keep Indiana off the scoreboard as it received two goals in the final 2:14 to carry a 7-6 lead into the final eight minutes.

Both teams struggled offensively in the first three minutes of the fourth quarter, but the Hoosiers widened their lead when Colleen McNaught found the back of the net. That led to a Shelby Taylor goal 47 seconds later and all of a sudden the Aztecs were down, 9-6, with 4:05 to play. SDSU was unable to duplicate its third-quarter performance and IU tacked on another goal with 2:12 left to provide the final margin.

With the loss, San Diego State was sent to the 11th-place game where it was met by UCSB. The Aztecs, like in most of their games this season, played from ahead when Carina Carballo opened the scoring and was followed by Benekou. Their lead was cut in half 30 seconds into the second quarter and erased 2:30 later, but an Israels goal gave SDSU a 3-2 advantage when halftime came around.

The third quarter was even as both traded goals. UCSB's Lauren Martin tied the game right out of the break and Israels got the lead back for the Scarlet and Black. Then Taylor Shore locked the score again only to have Carballo take it back for the Aztecs with 1:11 left in the frame.

San Diego State looked poised to earn the victory when Israels posted a hat trick with 6:11 left and the score 6-4. But with plenty of time left in the game, the Gauchos battled their way back with a Carly Christian goal with 5:30 remaining. Nursing a one-goal lead with under 10 seconds to go, the Aztecs allowed the equalizer to Christian, which sent the game to overtime.

Neither team was successful in finding the back of the net in the opening minutes of the extra frame, but UCSB's Claryann Olofsson-Loo found a crease late in the game and scored with 25 seconds left. Trailing 7-6, San Diego State looked for the tying goal, but was unlucky en route to the defeat.

SDSU will have next week off before competing at the UCI Invitational, Feb. 22-23.

No. 13 Indiana 10, No. 8 San Diego State 6
Canyonview Pool; San Diego, Calif.

SDSU 0-1-5-0--6
IU 3-2-2-3--10

SDSU goals: Taelor Moreno 2, Ioli Benekou, Alyssa Diacono, Anique Hermann, Caroline Israels
IU goals: Rebecca Gerrity 2, Colleen McNaught 2, Shelby Taylor 2, Shae Fournier, Alexis Jones, Devon Peterson, Candyce Schroder

SDSU saves: Rachel Mitchell 11
IU saves: Unavailable

No. T-16 UC Santa Barbara 7, No. 8 San Diego State 6 (overtime)
Canyonview Pool; San Diego, Calif.

UCSB 0-2-2-2--1---7
SDSU 2-1-2-1--0---6

UCSB goals: Carly Christian 2, Lauren Martin, Samantha Murphy, Claryann Olofsson-Loo, Jessie Porter, Taylor Shore
SDSU goals: Caroline Israels 3, Carina Carballo 2, Ioli Benekou

UCSB saves: Unavailable
SDSU saves: Rachel Mitchell 10