No. 8 Waves Open MPSF Tournament vs. No. 4 California Friday
Nov. 21, 2012
MALIBU, Calif. — No. 8 Pepperdine opens play in the 2012 MPSF Tournament Friday, November 23 when it tackles No. 4 California in the opening round. Game time is set for 1:30 p.m. at USC’s McDonald’s Swim Stadium. The Waves look to avenge a pair of earlier losses to the Golden Bears, most recently a 12-9 loss Nov. 3 in Malibu. Pepperdine also dropped a 12-9 decision to Cal in the Northern California Tournament Sept. 30.
GAME #22 — Friday (Nov. 23) at Los Angeles, Calif. (McDonald’s Swim Stadium): #8 Pepperdine (11-10, 3-5 MPSF) vs. #4 Cal (15-7, 5-3 MPSF) at 1:30 p.m - MPSF Tournament - First Round.
RANKINGS — Pepperdine is ranked No. 8 by the Collegiate Water Polo Association for the third straight week after spending the previous two weeks at No. 4.
SERIES VS. CALIFORNIA — The Golden Bears own a 51-14-1 overall record against Pepperdine and have won the last nine meetings including a pair of 12-9 setbacks this season. The Waves last win in the series came in a 7-5 home triumph in 2008.
ABOUT THE MPSF TOURNAMENT — The 2012 MPSF Tournament features the top eight teams in the MPSF standings. Other Friday matches include No. 1-seed USC (24-0, 8-0) versus No. 8-seed UCSB (15-10, 1-7) at 10 a.m., No. 2-seed UCLA (25-3, 7-1) versus No. 7-seed Pacific (12-10, 3-5) at 11:30 a.m. and No. 4-seed Stanford (15-5, 5-3) versus No. 5-seed Long Beach State (22-7, 4-4) at 3 p.m. If the Waves win Friday, they would play the winner of the UCLA/Pacific match at 3:00 p.m. Saturday. If Pepperdine wins its semifinal, it would play for the MPSF title at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25.
MPSF TOURNAMENT TICKETS — For ticket information and complete bracket/results of the 2012 MPSF Tournament go to the 2012 MPSF Tournament Page.
COMPLETE MPSF TOURNAMENT PAIRINGS/SCHEDULE — Complete 2012 MPSF Tournament schedule.
WAVES IN THE 2011 MPSF TOURNAMENT — Pepperdine was tantalizingly close to success in the 2011 MPSF Tournament, losing three matches by a combined four goals. The Waves dropped a 5-4 overtime decision to No. 3 seed UCLA in the opening round and fell 5-4 the next day against UC Irvine. Pepperdine lost in the finale 10-8 to UC Santa Barbara to close out tourney play.
REGULAR SEASON FINALE — Playing without three injured regulars, Pepperdine dropped a 16-5 decision to No. 1 and unbeaten USC Nov. 11. Marko Madaras (Eger, Hungary) led the way for Pepperdine offensively with a third period hat trick.
WAVE NOTABLES — Senior ATK Stephen Loomis enters the third week of MPSF play as Pepperdine’s leading scorer with 42 goals, while fellow senior ATK Matthew DeTrane (Moraga, Calif./Diablo Valley CC) rates second with 31 goals to go along with 19 assists. Junior ATK Mike Tragitt (Clovis, Calif./Clovis HS) leads the Waves with 30 assists. Sophomore goalkeeper Bence Valics has played every minute in goal this season and has collected 249 saves. Valics ranks second among MPSF leaders in saves per game (11.86).
HOME POOL ADVANTAGE — In its first 37 years of existence, Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool has hosted many Pepperdine victories. The Waves entered this season 265-103 all-time at home, boasting a win percentage of .720. The Waves have posted a winning record at home in 30 of 37 seasons.
COACH MOSES — Two-time U.S. Olympian (2008, 2012) and former Pepperdine All-American Merrill Moses has recently joined the staff as an interim co-head coach this season. Moses led the United States to a gold medal at the 2007 and 2011 Pan American Games. Moses also led the Waves to the 1997 national championship where they captured their first title.
COACH RODRIGUEZ — William “Willo” Rodriguez is the other interim co-head coach along with Moses. Rodriguez was a two-year player for the Waves and also was an assistant coach in the 2006 and 2007 seasons.”Willo” is a former member of the Puerto Rican National Squad that competed at the Olympic Qualifying Tournament, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2003.
COACH SCHROEDER — Water polo icon Terry Schroeder is a volunteer coach for the 2012 season. But he has much bigger plans in 2013, as Pepperdine has announced that Schroeder will return as the men’s water polo head coach next year. In his first stint with Pepperdine (1986-2005) he amassed 340 wins and a national championship in 1997. The head coach for USA Water Polo at the last two Olympics, Schroeder has been inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame (2005), U.S. Water Polo Hall of Fame (1998) and the Pepperdine Athletics Hall of Fame (1985).
PEPPERDINE WATER POLO HISTORY — Since 1990, only five different universities have won an NCAA water polo title: four football schools and Pepperdine. The Waves claimed their first NCAA title by beating USC in the final in 1997. Heading into 2012, the Waves had posted winning records in 28 of 37 seasons and had an all-time record of 682-426-8.
ABOUT PEPPERDINE — Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won NCAA Division I championships in five different men’s sports — one of just 16 schools to have accomplished this feat — and nine overall. Of this elite group, Pepperdine has the smallest enrollment and is the only school not in a BCS-affiliated conference. Located in scenic Malibu, Calif., the university overlooks the Pacific Ocean and its campus and athletic facilities are regularly voted among the nation’s most beautiful. Pepperdine, which is affiliated with the Church of Christ, ranks #54 overall on U.S. News and World Report’s list of America’s best colleges.