No. 20 Air Force Drops Two Games in California
Oct. 25, 2008
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Despite coming close in both games, the 20th-ranked Air Force water polo team went winless on Saturday at Santa Clara's brand-new Sullivan Aquatic Center, falling to the 12th-ranked host Broncos, 9-7, before dropping a close 8-7 contest to Cal Baptist. The Falcons now drop to 12-10 overall on the season and 7-3 in the Western Water Polo Association.
After Santa Clara (14-6, 8-2) took a 3-2 advantage after one period, Air Force came back in the second quarter, tying the game at 4-4 going into the second half. The Falcons also gained a one-goal advantage in the third period, taking a 6-5 lead into the final quarter. However, the Broncos outscored the Falcons 4-1 down the stretch to take the 9-7 victory in their new home pool.
Junior Alex Churnside (Orange, Calif.) led the Air Force offense with four goals, while classmate Jack Hines (Riverside, Calif.) added the final three scores. Meanwhile, goalkeeper David Ostrom (Jr., Mission Viejo, Calif.) had a solid performance in the cage, tallying 12 saves on the morning.
In its game against Cal Baptist, Air Force was looking to avenge a 14-9 loss earlier in the season. The Lancers, who recently dropped out of the national rankings, held a 2-1 advantage after the opening period. That early lead turned out to be the difference in the game, as the two teams matched up evenly in each of the final three quarters. Cal Baptist, which later knocked off Santa Clara in an early night game, was able to hold on to the 8-7 victory.
Hines, recently named the WWPA Player of the Week, was the Falcons' high scorer against Cal Bapist with four goals, while Churnside added two. Also scoring for Air Force was sophomore Bobby Geiger (Buellton, Calif.) with the final goal.
The Falcons' tough weekend continues tomorrow as they have two more games on the schedule, both being played at WWPA rival UC Davis. After taking on the 11th-ranked host Aggies at 9:00 a.m. (PT), Air Force will face No. 10 Long Beach State at 12:30 p.m.
No. 12 Santa Clara 9, No. 20 Air Force 7