Sept. 18, 2010
PLEASANT HILL, Calif. -
Facing a pair of top-10 teams, the 19th-ranked Air Force water polo team lost a pair of contests on the opening day of the NorCal Open, being played at Diablo Valley College. The Falcons dropped a 15-5 decision to second-ranked UCLA, while coming up short against No. 10 Long Beach State, 10-9.
The second-ranked Bruins dominated in the first game of the day, rolling to a 7-2 advantage after two periods. UCLA extended its lead to 12-5 at the end of the third quarter and shut out the Falcons in the final period for the 10-goal victory.
Seniors Bobby Geiger (Buellton, Calif.) and Kurt Lemmen (Orlando, Fla.) led Air Force with two goals each against UCLA, while sophomore Cruz Smithson (Capistrano Beach, Calif.) also got on the board for the Falcons.
In the second game of the day, the Falcons faced off against 10th-ranked Long Beach State. The 49ers got out to a 4-1 advantage at the end of the opening period, while Air Force cut the margin to 5-3 at the half. Following an evenly-matched third period, the Falcons won the fourth quarter, but still came one goal short of sending the game into overtime.
Geiger dominated Air Force’s offense against Long Beach State, tallying five goals, while Smithson, Lemmen, Matt Versage (Sr., Merced, Calif.) and Garrett Womack (So., Redlands, Calif.) also scored in the game. Meanwhile, sophomore goalkeeper Mike Fish (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) had a solid effort for the Falcons, credited with 11 saves in the contest.
The Falcons return to action tomorrow at Diablo Valley College, beginning with a 9:20 a.m. game versus No. 11 UC San Diego. The winner of that contest will move into the 13th-place contest, while the loser will play in the 15th-place game.
No. 2 UCLA 15, No. 19 Air Force 5
Air Force 1 2 4 2 5
UCLA 4 1 4 1 15
AF Scoring: Geiger 2, Lemmen 2, Smithson
UCLA Scoring: Lathrop 4, Jorth 3, Hays 2, White 2, Hennessy, Hohl, Wendt, Mirarchi
No. 10 Long Beach State 10, No. 19 Air Force 9
Air Force 1 2 4 2 9
LBSU 4 1 4 1 10
AF Scoring: Geiger 5, Smithson, Lemmen, Versage, Womack
LBSU Scoring: Petrovic 3, Matulis 2, Clute 2, van der Linde, Snyder, Raston