No. 2 Trojans Silence No. 8 Michigan In Second Half To Open 2017 With 11-3 Win|
Jan. 20, 2017
SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. -- The No. 2 USC women's water polo team issued a second-half shutout of No. 8 Michigan to load up an 11-3 win in the Trojans' season opener today at the Winter Invitational in Santa Barbara, Calif. Leading the scoring charge for USC were two brand-new Trojans, as freshmen Denise Mammolito and Maud Megens each scored twice in the victorious start to 2017 while sophomore goalie Amanda Longan gathered 13 saves in the complete-game outing.
The first goal of the 2017 campaign came from the hands of senior Brigitta Games to kick off a 1-0 lead for the Trojans against the Wolverines. Michigan would keep a close grip on USC in the first frame, reeling in the Women of Troy to tie it 1-1 and then 2-2 after senior Nikki Stansfield had helped USC edge ahead. A 6-on-5 strike from Stephania Haralabidis -- the third USC senior to strike in the first period -- got it to a 3-2 USC lead at the close of the first. To start the second, Michigan was awarded another 5-meter penalty shot. The Wolverines had made good on their first penalty chance in the first period, but USC sophomore goalie Amanda Longan made the stretch for the save on this one to preserve the Trojans' one-goal advantage. Still, Michigan was able to equalize next, but that would be the last goal the Wolverines would manage in the game.
The Trojans shut out Michigan for the last 21 minutes, 20 seconds of action while punching up eight goals of their own in that stretch. Freshman Maud Megens lit the fuse on that scoring streak with back-to-back goals to lift USC into the lead to stay. Fellow freshman Denise Mammolito struck next to make it 6-3, and then junior Hayley McKelvey closed down the half as a 7-3 USC lead with her first goal of the game. In the second half, the USC defense would not bend. Michigan would be turned away on every occasion, while Mammolito gathered her second goal of her USC debut and Annika Jensen, Ioanna Haralabidis and Brianna Daboub got in on the scoring action to wrap up an 11-3 final win for the Trojan cause.
Now 1-0 on the year, USC turns to a double dose of action tomorrow (Jan. 21) as the Winter Invite continues. The Trojans will take on Cal Baptist first in a morning matchup at 10:10 a.m. before turning to a 3 p.m. clash with Cal State Northridge tomorrow afternoon. On Sunday (Jan. 22), USC will open the day with an 11:30 a.m. match against Marist and then face host UC Santa Barbara at 4:10 p.m. to round out the weekend's action.
#2 USC 11, #8 Michigan 3
SAVES: Amanda Longan (USC) 13, Emily Browning (MICH) n/a.