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NCAA Men’s Water Polo Semifinals: UCLA vs. Southern Cal Game Thread

This afternoon, the Bruins will take on the Trojans with the winner advancing to the National Championship Game tomorrow.

Freshman Ashworth Molthen had a hat trick against George Washington on Thursday.
Minette Rubin/

This evening, the UCLA men’s water polo team returns to action with a lot of pride on the line. That’s because the Bruins are facing Southern Cal for the right to play for the NCAA Championship tomorrow.

Last Time Out

The Bruins’ last game was on Thursday when they met the George Washington Colonials in the final game of the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. In the preview I wrote for that game, I predicted the final score would “likely be somewhere in the neighborhood of 16-6.”

Well, I was close. The Bruins dismantled the Colonials by a final score of 18-6. Eleven different players scored for UCLA in the game and three Bruins recorded hat tricks. Senior Austin Rone, sophomore Nicolas Saveljic and freshman Ashworth Molthen each scored three times.

Starting goalkeeper Alex Wolf had nine saves and allowed just three goals before being replaced by Danny Roland in the fourth quarter.

Southern Cal Trojans

While the Bruins got to play a tune-up game on Thursday, the Trojans have had almost two weeks off since they lost to UCLA in the Third Place Game of the MPSF Tournament.

In a season where the Trojans have only lost three games all year, it’s interesting that Southern Cal has lost back-to-back games. Their only other loss came against top seed Stanford back on October 6th.

Trojan head coach Jovan Vavic will almost certainly have his team well-prepared for today’s game, but the only things which seem certain are that Vavic will do something which won’t be called that merits an ejection today and this one will likely come down to the team which scores last.

This is your UCLA men’s water polo NCAA Semifinal open thread.

Go Bruins!!! Bring home NC #117!!!