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UCLA Men’s Water Polo Faces Southern Cal in MSPF Third Place Game

The Bruins lost to Stanford, 16-15, in overtime in the MPSF semifinals.

Nicolas Saveljic scored five goals yesterday against Stanford. Minette Rubin/

Yesterday, while the UCLA football team was losing to Southern Cal, the UCLA men’s water polo team faced the Stanford Cardinal in the semifinals of the MSPF Tournament. The game went into overtime, but the Bruins couldn’t pull off the upset and Stanford won 16-15.

As a result, UCLA now faces Southern Cal in the third place game today at 1 pm. The game will air live on Pac-12 Network Bay Area.

Last Time Out

After blowing out Penn State Behrend 27-4 on Friday, the Bruins took on the Stanford Cardinal yesterday. Nicolas Saveljic scored five goals and Tommy Gruwell added four more while Jake Cavano and Andy Rogers each scored twice, but it was Ashworth Molthen’s second goal of the game with 42 seconds left in the fourth quarter which tied the game up and sent it to overtime.

In OT, Stenford scored twice in the first overtime period to take a 16-14 lead. Unfortunately, UCLA could only score once in overtime and that goal didn’t come until there were just four seconds left in the second overtime period, leaving the Bruins a goal short with no time left.

As a result, Stanford will play for the MPSF Championship today while the Bruins will face Southern Cal.

Southern Cal Trojans

Southern Cal earned the top seed in this weekend’s tournament by beating UCLA, Stanford and UC Berkeley during the regular season. But the Trojans lost to the Golden Bears yesterday 12-9 in the first MPSF semifinal game to fall into today’s third place game.

Two weeks ago, UCLA lost to Southern Cal 10-7 at home. Today’s game is more than a matter of pride. It will likely determine which of these two teams makes the NCAA Tournament field. So, at the very least, the Bruins need to make sure it’s a close game because they do have the better overall record over the course of the entire season.

That could become a moot point, though, as long as Stanford beats UC Berkeley in the MPSF Championship Game today as there will likely be three MPSF/Pac-12 schools selected to play in the NCAA Tournament.

This is your MPSF Third Place Game open thread.

Go Bruins!!!