Water Polo Host Long Beach on Saturday
UPCOMING - The No. 8 Pepperdine men's water polo team (3-6) opens its home season this weekend with an exhibition game Friday afternoon and a MPSF game on Saturday.
GAME #10 PEPPERDINE VS. LONG BEACH STATE (Saturday, Oct. 3 @ 11 a.m. at The Raleigh-Runnels Pool, Malibu, Calif.)
No. 9 Long Beach (4-3) is coming off a 9-5 loss to No. 5 Loyola Marymount (Sept. 26).
Senior Jeff Greenwood is the leading scorer for the 49er's averaging 1.85 goals per game. Long Beach is led Head Coach Gavin Arroyo.
USC RECAP - The No. 8 Pepperdine men's water polo team suffered a 14-8 loss to No. 3 USC on Saturday afternoon.
Senior Clayton Snyder (Seal Beach, Calif./Los Alamitos HS) was the high-scorer for Pepperdine with three goals. Snyder scored his 100th career goal in today's match. Junior Andrew Milcovich (Walnut Creek, Calif./De La Salle HS) netted two goals. Freshman Colin Carroll (Fountain Valley, Calif./Mater Dei HS) was credited with 10 saves in the goal.
The Trojans (9-1) got off to strong start with five goals scored to the Waves (3-6) one in the first period. Each team scored two goals in the second period to make the score 7-3, at the half. USC came back in the third period with another big 5-1 scoring run and the lead was extended with the Trojans up 12-7. Pepperdine netted one goal to USC's two in the final period to end the game with the Trojans up at 14-8.
PEPPERDINE IN THE POLLS - The Waves stayed at No. 8 in the national rankings this week, according to the latest NCAA Div. I polls.
MPSF STATS: JP MacDonell is ranked No. 2 for goals scored with a 2.57 average per game. Thomas O'Connell is ranked No. 10 for goalie saves with a 4.00 average per game and No. 5 for goals against with a 4.83 average per game. The Waves are ranked No. 8 for team goals at 9.22 per game and No. 8 for team defense with 8.56 per game.
COACH KOCUR - Coach Jack Kocur is in his fourth year as head coach. Kocur took over the position from Terry Schroeder when he took a leave of absence to serve as the assistant coach for the U.S. National Team in 2006. Kocur was a member of the Waves 1997 national championship team, earning first All-American honors as a senior. Kocur spent four seasons as an assistant under Schroeder.
COACH O'BRIEN - Coach Gary O'Brien begins his second season as assistant coach. O'Brien played for UCLA and then went on to play semi-professionally in Australia. He has eight years of coaching experience at the high school, community college, university and club level.
COACH MATTHIES - Coach Marty Matthies joins the Waves staff as the volunteer coach this season. Matthies was a member of the California 2006 NCAA championship team. He played for the USA Water Polo National Senior Team in 2005. Matthies is the son of Pepperdine's Head Women's Volleyball Coach Nina Matthies.
PEPPERDINE HISTORY - In its 34 seasons, the Pepperdine water polo program has posted an overall record of 648-382-8, including a 163-108 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation record. The Waves have posted 15 20+ winning seasons and advanced to the NCAA Championships 12 times, claiming the program's lone national title in 1997.
SUPER SENIOR CLASS - The senior class is comprised of two returning starters and four returning players who were an integral part of the 2008 team. JP MacDonell and Clayton Snyder lead the team as the 2009 co-captain. MacDonell was selected as a 2008 All-American third team and All MPSF first team. He was a member of the 2009 USA Water Polo University Team. Snyder enters his second season as a co-captain. He was named to the 2008 All-MPSF third team and the All-MPSF academic team.
Taylor Watson had a strong 2008 season and will be a contender for a starting position. Brett Auer came back at the end of the season after recovering from an injury. He led the Waves with three goals in an upset victory against Stanford at the 2008 MPSF semi-finals. Christian Cardey, Preston Lujan, Sam Busby and Jacob Young round out the senior class. The group has been together all four years with the exception of Young who transferred as a junior in 2008. All four saw significant playing time in the 2008 season and are expected to be key on defense and counter attacks.
REDSHIRTS RETURN - Four redshirts are anxious to get back in the pool this season. Travis Gough, Matt Brown, Jonathan Flowers and Milos Purkovic should all see some action this year. Gough was one of the top freshman scorers in 2007. He scored five goals in a game twice (Whittier and Cal Lutheran). Brown, Flowers and Purkovic will make their debut as Waves this season.
JUNIORS - Andrew Milcovich and Bryce Mclain will represent the junior class this year. Milcovich is a returning starter and a 2008 MPSF All-Academic team selection. McLain is expected to be the starting goal keeper for the Waves.
AMAZING FRESHMAN CLASS - Fourteen freshmen make the 2009 class one of the largest in Pepperdine history.
Among the group are two USA Water Polo Junior National Team members: Spencer Hamby and James Perry. Fellow Wave Mathew Carter played for South Africa's Junior National Team.
Twelve remaining freshmen fill every position on the roster and look to provide the Waves with depth this season.
ABOUT PEPPERDINE - Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won a total of nine NCAA championships in five different men's sports - one of just 14 schools to have accomplished this feat. Of the 14, Pepperdine is the only non-BCS school and has by far the smallest enrollment. The majority of Pepperdine's teams are ranked nationally year after year and compete for conference and national titles.