The SDSU men’s club water polo team began its season in impressive fashion this past weekend. Besides displaying a well balanced offensive and defensive attack, the Aztecs broke two school records. First, the Aztecs start the season 3-0, something no past team has accomplished. Second, their strong showing this weekend garnered them their highest ever national ranking at 2nd in the nation. A solid mix of returning veterans and talented newcomers helped make this possible.
The Aztecs started their 3 game tournament by dismantling 2011 and 2012 national champion USC, 22-10. In what was expected to be a slugfest, SDSU jumped out to an early lead and never looked back.
SDSU then took on UC Irvine in what will be the featured game (since I was there). The Aztecs scored a goal on the first play of the game in under 30 seconds. Their offensive efficiency implied that this game would be over in a matter of minutes. However, UCI made quick work on the offensive end and the score was deadlocked at 2-2 at the middle of the first quarter. That is when the UCI wheels absolutely fell off. The remainder of the game saw UCI score 2 more times and 15 different Aztecs score goals. This was an dominant performance, with their depth and relentless counterattack visibly wearing their opponents down. The final score was 20-4 SDSU. While most players on the team contributed in at least one facet of the game, Collin Layana had an impressive stat line with 1 goal, 4 steals, and 1 assist. Not a bad days’ work.
The next day, SDSU concluded their tournament by defeating Long Beach State by a score of 12-5 in what was a tough match for most of the game. However, as the score implies, the Aztecs found a way to down the Beach and pulled away to remain undefeated throughout their first weekend of play.
As a past member of the club team, I have never seen such a balanced and cohesive SDSU team. They are at least 12 deep off the bench and hardly have any drop off in talent. A ranking of 2nd in the nation is well deserved as this team looked nearly flawless from what I saw. For their first tournament, the Aztecs already look like they’re in late season form, which will bode well when the cage match against defending champion UCLA rolls around. Come out and support your Aztecs during their next game when they take on UCSanta Barbara at UCSan Diego on Saturday, October 18th. This looks like, and should be, a very special season.
For a complete season schedule, click here.
For weekly rankings, click here.
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