No. 1 USC Brings Record Win Streak Back To Home Waters

    March 22, 2017

    USC Water Polo Release Get Acrobat Reader

    #1 USC vs. #10 Princeton
    5 p.m. PT | Thursday, March 23
    Uytengsu Aquatics Center (Los Angeles, Calif.)
    TV: Pac-12 Network & Pac-12 Los Angeles | Live Stream (Subscription Only) | LIVE STATS

    #1 USC vs. #14 San José State
    1 p.m. PT | Saturday, March 25
    Uytengsu Aquatics Center (Los Angeles, Calif.)
    LIVE STATS

    #1 USC vs. #18 Hartwick
    2:30 p.m. PT | Saturday, March 25
    Uytengsu Aquatics Center (Los Angeles, Calif.)
    LIVE STATS

    THIS WEEK
    Top-ranked USC is finally back in home waters after a stretch of six weeks in action on the road. The undefeated Trojans (21-0, 1-0 MPSF) carry a record-setting 48-game win streak into their return to Uytengsu Aquatics Center, where they host three teams this week. First up is a televised clash against No. 10 Princeton (15-1) at 5 p.m. on Thursday (March 23). That game will be broadcast on Pac-12 Network and Pac-12 Los Angeles, with Greg Mescall and Adam Krikorian on the call. Then, USC turns to a doubleheader on Saturday (March 25), where the Trojans have an MPSF matchup against No. 14 San José State (9-13, 0-1 MPSF) at 1 p.m. After that wraps, USC takes on No. 18 Hartwick (10-5) in a nonconference bout at 2:30 p.m.

    THE LAST MEETING
    USC14
    Princeton2
    May 11, 2012
    San Diego, Calif.
    It's Semi Time For Women of Troy
    The USC women's water polo team put forth a dominating and well-rounded performance in the first match of it 2012 NCAA Championship campaign today, topping sixth-seeded Princeton 14-2 behind 10 different Trojan scorers. The first-round win over the Tigers shoves No. 3 seeded USC into a grudge match against No. 2 seed UCLA tomorrow in the semifinals. After taking three-one-goal losses to the Bruins, the Trojans - now 22-5 overall --- are looking for some timely revenge over their rivals tomorrow at 5:15 p.m. for the right to fight for a national championship.

    THE LAST MEETING
    USC11
    San Jose State6
    March 26, 2016
    San Jose, Calif.
    Top-Ranked Trojans Serve Up 11-6 Win At No. 10 San Jose State
    The No. 1 USC women’s water polo team stayed the course to another victory today, securing its second MPSF win of the season while extending the Trojans’ perfect 2016 record to 15-0 with an 11-6 win at No. 10 San Jose State. The Trojans came out firing, and although they hit an offensive lull in the second frame, junior captain Avery Peterson helped steer her team back on course with a second-half hat trick.

    THE LAST MEETING
    Hartwick5
    USC21
    March 27, 2014
    Uytengsu Aquatics Center
    No. 1 USC Hauls In A 21-5 Win Over Hartwick
    The No. 1 USC women's water polo team racked up a hefty win at home today, topping No. 19 Hartwick 21-5 on the hands of 10 different scorers at Uytengsu Aquatics Center. Stephania Haralabidis had the hot hand with a four-goal effort to pace the Trojans to the big win. USC shut out the Hawks for almost 18 minutes of action as the Women of Troy constructed a 13-goal run out of reach. The victory keeps USC rolling undefeated through 2014, now holding a 26-game overall winning streak for a 19-0 record on the year.

    USC IN THE RANKINGS
    USC opened 2016 ranked No. 2 in the national preseason poll and in the MPSF preseason poll. After spending the first seven weeks of the season at No. 2, USC climbed to No. 1 this week following the Trojans' win over top-ranked Stanford on Feb. 26. USC remains the top-ranked team in the land entering this ninth week of competition.

    SCOUTING PRINCETON
    The No. 10 Tigers hold a 15-1 overall record after going 3-1 at the Roadrunner Invitational last week and picking up an 11-6 win at Pomona-Pitzer early this week. Princeton will also visit Long Beach State before Thursday's clash at USC. Haley Wan entered the week as Princeton's top scorer with 29 goals. U.S. Olympic gold-medalist and Sullivan Award finalist Ashleigh Johnson mans the cage for Princeton, averaging 11.4 saves and 3.5 goals-against per game. USC is 2-0 all-time against the Tigers after a 14-2 win when the teams last met in the first round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament in San Diego.

    SCOUTING SJSU
    The No. 14 Spartans are 9-13 overall and 0-1 in MPSF play after a 5-3 nonconference win over Harvard last week. Carla Toha Vilanova is SJSU'S top scorer with 32 goals to date, while goalie Katelynn Thompson is averaging 7.98 saves and 9.62 goals-against per game in her 19 appearances. USC is 32-0 all-time against the SJSU after an 11-6 win in the teams' MPSF meeting last year in San José.

    SCOUTING HARTWICK
    The No. 18 Hawks are 10-5 overall after a 19-9 win over St. Francis Brooklyn and a 17-12 win over Siena last week. Zsofia Polak is Hartwick's top scorer with 47 goals to date, while goalie Josette Santos is averaging 7.7 saves and 8.4 goals-against per game in her 17 appearances. USC is 10-0 all-time against the Hawks after a 21-5 win when the teams last met in 2014 in Los Angeles.

    GETTING STREAKY
    The USC women set a new national women's record win streak on March 16, winning their 47th straight game in a 15-2 victory over Indiana in a neutral matchup in Honolulu -- breaking the previous women's record that had been set by UCLA from 2007-09. The Trojans have since extended the streak to 48 in a row -- dating back to the final game of 2015 and including an undefeated 2016 to add to this season's 21-0 mark so far. With the Trojans' overtime win over then-No. 1 Stanford at the Barbara Kalbus Invitational, the USC women broke the USC men's best winning run of 44 in a row (2005-06). The UCLA men hold the longest collegiate water polo win streak with 57 in a row, held from 2014-16.

    LAST ACTION
    USC picked up two key wins over Spring Break, as the Trojans traveled to Hawai'i for training and competition last week. USC's first contest saw the Trojans break the national women's record win streak with USC's 47th straight victory -- a 15-2 win over No. 15 Indiana in Honolulu. The next day, USC had to fight out of a two-goal deficit to get a 48th straight win in the books, finally pulling out a 9-8 comeback win over No. 8 host Hawai'i. Against the Hoosiers on St. Patrick's Day, a quick 2-0 lead was built by the Trojans on goals from Avery Peterson and Ioanna Haralabidis before Indiana broke through with a score. That prompted a powerful response from USC, which fired off a 12-goal surge to get safely clear of Indiana. Senior Nikki Stansfield issued a hat trick in the second quarter to help build an 11-1 halftime lead for the Trojans, who ballooned that lead out to 14-1 by the end of the third. Goalies Amanda Longan and Victória Chamorro split time in the cage for this one, backing up a powerful defensive stand for the Trojans that was paired with a balanced offensive effort. Nikki Stansfield led the way on the scoring front with her hat trick, while eight more Trojans got in on the scoring effort in the record-breaking victory for the Women of Troy. The next night against the Rainbow Wahine, the Trojans trailed by two goals in the second period and by one entering the fourth, but with the clock winding down it was USC's seniors who stepped up in the final moments. With the game tied up, some hard work from Brigitta Games got USC a 5-meter penalty shot with 19 seconds left. Stephania Haralabidis rifled it in, and USC had the lead in-hand, fending off the Rainbow Wahine to lock up the Trojans' 48th consecutive win. Haralabidis was an offensive constant for the Trojans once again. She plugged in five goals for USC in the win, striking the opening goal for the Trojans and then pouring on four goals in the second half, including the game-winner. Haralabidis' opener was answered by three straight scores from Hawai'i, and USC was playing catchup with the Rainbow Wahine for the next stretch. Kelsey McIntosh closed the gap to 3-2 during the second, but Hawai'i fired right back. Avery Peterson hauled her Trojans within one soon after, only to see the Rainbow Wahine again pad their lead. A bomb from distance by USC's Brianna Daboub had USC within one at halftime, down 5-4 to host Hawai'i. In the second half, Haralabids made her stand. Games earned an ejection for the Trojans, and Haralabidis converted to pull USC even. Haralabids would hit again next, and USC had its first lead for the first time since early in the first period. Two more Hawai'i goals came next, putting USC behind once more, down 7-6 as the third period came to a close. In the fourth, Daboub whizzed in a power play goal to snarl it up at 7-7. After a defensive stop by the Trojans, USC came out of the timeout and had Amanda Longan -- who finished with 13 saves in the cage -- hit Haralabidis for the go-ahead goal, up 8-7. A lob shot would make its way through for the Rainbow Wahine to bring up another tie, but that's when USC's last-minute heroics came through in the clutch, with Games getting USC the penalty chance and Haralabidis burying it for the game-winner. After punching up seven goals on the road trip, Stephania Haralabidis was named the MPSF Player of the Week for the second time this season and the fifth time in her Trojan career.

    BIG WINS IN IRVINE
    The nation's best teams tangled in Irvine at the Barbara Kalbus Invitational, and the Women of Troy emerged as the champion in another key tournament with a winning run at the 2017 event. After pinning up its first shutout win of the year to open the tourney, topping No. 20 LMU 14-0 behind a four-goal game from Ioanna Haralabidis and 10 saves from Amanda Longan, USC closed down group play with a 12-4 win over No. 7 Hawai'i. Haralabidis added four more in that one, while goalie Victória Chamorro had a career-high 17 saves to get USC through to the semifinals. There, the Trojans would face rival UCLA for the first time this year, and USC was able to shrug off an early 3-2 deficit and more out ahead of the Bruins for a final 10-9 victory to seal a trip to the title match once again. In a rematch of the 2016 NCAA Championship game, USC was up against top-ranked Stanford, and the game lived up to its billing. The Cardinal tied up the game at the end of the third quarter and then again later in the fourth to bring up overtime. There, USC would issue back-to-back scores to take a lead in the first overtime frame. In the second, Stanford struck first, but USC struck last when it mattered, netting a blast from Haralabidis to go up 10-9 with five seconds left, and USC would fend off the Cardinal for the win. Brianna Daboub led the scoring charge for USC with three goals, while Longan gathered in 12 saves to help keep the Cardinal at bay. For her 10 goals logged at the tournament, including that OT game-winner, Ioanna Haralabidis picked up her first career selection as MPSF Player of the Week. Along the way, Haralabidis also moved up to rank as USC's No. 10 all-time scorer.

    VIC PICKS UP MPSF ACCOLADES
    Junior goalie Victória Chamorro gave up just four goals and accumulated 19 saves in her two appearances in the cage for the Trojans at the Triton Invitational. For her stellar efforts on the defensive end, Chamorro picked up her first career selection as MPSF Player of the Week on Feb. 14. In a complete-game effort in the championship match against #5 Arizona State, Chamorro collected 12 saves while allowing just two goals to the Sun Devils in a 12-2 championship win for the Trojans. The previous day, she checked in for three periods of work against #17 San Diego State and made seven saves in that stretch while allowing just two goals through by the Aztecs. Chamorro's effort in the cage helped USC successfully defend its Triton Invite title and improve to 14-0 on the year. With 354 career saves to her name to date, Chamorro ranks No. 6 all-time on the Trojans' career saves list. She's gone big this season with several powerful performances, collecting 11 saves in a single half of work at UCSB, and gathering a career-high 17 saves in a win over Hawai'i already this year.

    STEPH STRIKES IT BIG AT WINTER INVITE
    Stephania Haralabidis set a new career high and tied the MPSF single-game record with nine goals scored in the final game of the Winter Invitational back in January, helping to earn the senior USC's first MPSF Player of the Week award of 2017. Haralabidis' nine-goal outburst came in USC's 19-5 win over No. 9 host UC Santa Barbara, marking the Trojans' fifth straight win at the event. Haralabidis let all USC scorers with 17 goals totaled across those five games. She opened the season with a single goal scored in a 17-3 win over No. 8 Michigan on day one. On the second day, Haralabidis scored twice in a 22-1 win over Cal Baptist and punched in two more in a 16-3 win over CSUN. The final day was Haralabidis' big one, as she had a hat trick in a 13-8 win over No. 5 Hawai'i before the record nine-goal explosion against UCSB.

    BY THE NUMBERS
    Through the first 21 games of 2017, undefeated USC has outscored opponents 343-83. Senior Stephania Haralabidis is the top scorer to date with 63 goals -- tying her 2016 season total and giving her 248 career goals to lock her in at No. 3 on USC's all-time scoring chart. Behind her on the 2017 scoresheet sits twin sister Ioanna Haralabidis with 39 goals and freshman Maud Megens with 36 goals to date. On the defensive end, three goalies have checked into the cage to date. Sophomore Amanda Longan has logged minutes in 14 games, averaging 10.9 saves and 4.7 goals-against per game. Junior goalie Victória Chamorro has appeared in 10 games and averages 10.7 saves and 2.8 goals-against per game. Freshman Holly Parker has also capped up in her first year as a Trojans, making 12 saves and allowing just seven goals in her six appearances. The Trojan defense has opponents silent in at least one period of play in 16 different games while accumulating a grand total of 34 shutout periods this season so far.

    ON THE RISE
    Greek twins Stephania Haralabidis and Ioanna Haralabidis are climbing in the USC record books. Stephania opened 2016 ranked as USC's No. 8 all-time career scorer. Now 21 games into 2017, she is already closing the gap on the No. 2 spot, holding 248 career goals to date -- seven away from that next rung on the career ladder. Ioanna, meanwhile, started out 2017 at No. 20 in the record books. After 21 games, she has catapulted to No. 10 all-time, holding 157 career goals to date. On March 4, another USC senior broke into the century club at Troy, as Brigitta Games scored her 100th career goal in a win at CSUB. While those three are rising in the ranks on the offensive end, two Trojans are making their marks on the USC career saves sheet. Junior Victória Chamorro -- who set a USC freshman goalie record with 207 saves in her first season at Troy -- now boasts 357 career saves to rank No. 6 on the career saves charts. Sophomore Amanda Longan is a spot behind, sitting at No. 7 all-time with her 270 saves and counting.

    OH CAPTAINS, MY CAPTAINS
    USC's leadership corps boasts a veteran pair, with senior Avery Peterson and junior Brianna Daboub standing tall as USC's team captains for the second straight season. Both All-Americans and All-MPSF Honorable Mention recipients, they also are both MPSF Scholar-Athletes. And of course, they captained the Trojans to an undefeated 2016 season to claim their first national crowns. With 72 career goals to her name, Peterson stands out as a 2-meter power for the Trojans. Daboub has rung up 81 goals to date. Goalie Amanda Longan also has picked up a captain's role this season, standing out as a vocal defensive leader for the Trojans in her sophomore season.

    BRINGING BACK THE BALANCE
    USC's 2017 roster looks strikingly similar to last year's NCAA Championship crew. The Trojans' overall balance is back, with all six top scorers returning, along with an All-American pairing of goalies in sophomore Amanda Longan and junior Victória Chamorro back in the cage. In all, the returning Trojans accounted for 88 percent of the scoring last year, while Longan and Chamorro combined for an average of 8.8 saves and 4.7 goals-allowed per game in 2016.

    THE VETS
    Senior captain Avery Peterson is one of five seniors on the roster for 2017, joined by fellow All-Americans Brigitta Games, Ioanna Haralabidis and Stephania Haralabidis, along with Nikki Stansfield. A further depth charge of veteran talent with winning experience comes from juniors Brianna Daboub, Annika Jensen and Hayley McKelvey. All with NCAA Championship experience, all are warriors, and all are fiercely devoted to their team and the task at hand.

    NETMINDERS
    On last year's All-American list, there was one USC freshman standing tall among them. At 6-foot-2 Amanda Longan was an impact player as soon as she splashed down at Troy, Longan quickly made herself at home as half of an impressive goalkeeping tandem for the Trojans -- sharing time with 2015 All-American and Brazilian Olympian Victória Chamorro. Now a junior-sophomore goalkeeping tandem, Chamorro and Longan are yet another expression of the youth movement making waves alongside USC's juniors and seniors. They have some backup this year as well, with freshman Holly Parker having proven herself fully capable of stepping into the cage as she has logged seven saves and allowed only three goals in her six periods of action so far.

    THE NEW CREW
    When it comes to this year's freshman class, there are already several new faces that are forcing opponents to take notice. Dutch import Maud Megens has emerged as the headliner so far. She tallied 10 goals in her first five games of action to stand as USC's third leading scorer after that first week of work. Denise Mammolito also made noise in week one, punching up six goals, while fellow freshmen Elise Stein, Sawyer Belville and Kaylee Brownsberger also notched their first career goals as Trojans in those first days of competition at the UCSB Winter Invitational.

    TRITON TITLISTS
    USC rolled its way to another Triton Invitational title last month, beating four teams to claim the tournament championship on Feb. 12 in La Jolla. Led by five goals from Maud Megens, USC opened up with an 18-2 win over Santa Clara to start the first day of play. That afternoon, Brigitta Games and Stephania Haralabidis each had hat tricks to help lift USC to a 17-4 win over San Diego State. The next day, USC put its silencers on in the fourth period of both contests to top off another run to a Triton Invitational championship. In the semifinal round against No. 6 Michigan, USC worked out ahead of the Wolverines to notch a 9-5 win and move on to the title match. There, the Trojans poured on a run of eight consecutive goals, rendering the Sun Devils scoreless as USC crafted a 12-2 lead entering the final minute of the game. One last big save from goalie Victória Chamorro -- her 12th save of the game -- wrapped up the resounding victory for the Trojans, while Haralabidis finished off a hat trick during the surge to victory.

    2017 TROJANS AT A GLANCE
    The defending national champions are coming off an undefeated run through 2016, with head coach Jovan Vavic at the helm for the 23rd season. The USC women are looking to claim back-to-back national titles for the first time in program history. Their 13th consecutive NCAA appearance was a fortunate one, as the Trojans topped off 2016 by raising the NCAA trophy. Picked No. 2 in the National and MPSF Preseason Polls, the Trojans weigh in just behind top-picked Stanford for the second straight season. USC returns all six 2016 All-Americans, including Cutino Award winner Stephania Haralabidis and Cutino finalist Brigitta Games. In addition to those two powers -- both seniors this year -- USC has seven All-Americans on the roster for 2017. Both All-American captains, Brianna Daboub and Avery Peterson, return, having combined for 63 goals last year. Peterson's career-best 35 goals in 2016 was matched by Ioanna Haralabidis. In all, USC returns 12 members of last season's 16-player NCAA roster. •