No. 2 Trojans Power Up For Perfect 2-0 Start To 2016|
Sept. 3, 2016
LA JOLLA, CALIF. -- The No. 2 USC men's water polo team pieced together a pair of powerful performances on opening day at the Triton Invitational. USC's 2-0 start to 2016 came with a well-balanced start to the season, as the Trojans pinned up a 14-3 win over No. 8 UC Irvine and a 16-3 victory over No. 17 Cal Baptist in La Jolla. USC had nine different scorers strike the back of the net in each game, displaying the Trojans' depth in this 2016 campaign.
USC's season opener saw three Trojans tally their first career goals at USC. The first USC goal of the year came from freshman Marin Dasic, and the first goals of the second period of play were served up in back-to-back fashion from redshirt freshman Daniel Leong. Soon after, true freshman Thomas Dunstan rang up his first goal as a Trojan, and USC was off to the races with an 8-1 lead on the Anteaters that would bump up to 9-1 by halftime. Junior Mihajlo Milicevic led the way with a team-high three goals for the Trojan cause, while junior goalie McQuin Baron went the distance in the cage and hauled in eight saves as USC pressed on to a final 14-3 win over UC Irvine.
The Trojans would find an even higher gear for their next contest, drumming up the first nine goals of the game. That included the first career goal from redshirt freshman Sam Slobodien, while a pack of USC returners hit the back of the net as well in steaming to a 9-0 halftime advantage over Cal Baptist. Senior Nick Bell disrupted the Lancer game plan to the tune of five first-half steals to help the Trojan defense shut out its opponent in the first half of action. In the second half of play, USC redshirt freshman goalie Simon Wu checked in for his first game action as a Trojan, continuing the trend of your Trojans making an impact in USC's winning start to 2016. With Wu backing them up, the Trojans stayed on course and served up another seven goals as Bell, Matteo Morelli and Mitch Embrey each worked their ways into hat tricks to help top off USC's 16-3 victory over the Lancers.
Now 2-0 on the year, USC will set up camp at Uytengsu Aquatics Center to prep for the Trojans' home opener next weekend. USC will play host to UC Santa Barbara in a 9 a.m. morning matchup on Saturday (Sept. 10) in Los Angeles.
<2016 TRITON INVITATIONAL (La Jolla, Calif.)
#2 USC 14, #8 UC Irvine 3
SAVES: McQuin Baron (USC) 8, Matej Matiejevic (UCI) 18.
#2 USC 16, #17 Cal Baptist 3