CMS Men's Water Polo Improves to 6-0 in SCIAC with Two League Wins

CMS Men's Water Polo Improves to 6-0 in SCIAC with Two League Wins

CLAREMONT, Calif. - The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's water polo team, which moved up to No. 2 in the latest national Division III poll released today, picked up a pair of SCIAC wins in the span of three hours, defeating La Verne 11-7 on the road in the afternoon and then coming back to Axelrood Pool for a 16-6 win over Caltech in the evening.

With the wins, the Stags now stand at 7-1 overall, with the only defeat coming at the hands of No. 1 USC, and a perfect 6-0 in the SCIAC. 

In the La Verne contest, freshman William Clark, the reigning SCIAC Offensive Player of the Week, had three goals and added an assist, while junior Zack Rossman and sophomore Robert Driscoll each had two goals. Sophomore Barron Banta also had a goal and an assist. The Caltech match saw Rossman and freshman Eric Warmoth (pictured) each tally hat tricks, while Sean Pine, Peter Blumberg and Ethan Lewis had two goals apiece. 

The La Verne match was close into the second half, as the Stags were slow to get their offense clicking. After the Leopards went ahead 1-0 in the opening minute, Clark and Driscoll scored to give CMS a 2-1 lead after the first quarter. Clark scored early in the second quarter to push it to 3-1 and after La Verne answered back, Warmoth scored his first of four goals in the doubleheader to make it 4-2 going into the break. 

La Verne scored the first goal of the second half to close to within 4-3, but the Stags then found their groove, with sophomore Koss Klobucher answering right back and Rossman scoring 50 seconds later off a Lewis pass to give his team a 6-3 lead. The Leopards scored twice more in the third quarter, but both times the Stags answered immediately, with Driscoll scoring 20 seconds after La Verne cut it to 6-4 and Banta scoring 16 seconds after the gap was closed to 7-5. 

Clark finished off his hat trick with 6:29 left in the fourth to make it a four-goal game, and sophomore Nick Britt and Rossman scored back-to-back goals 53 seconds apart to give CMS its largest lead at 11-6 with four minutes to go. Freshman goalie Matt Tran allowed two goals and had eight saves in the first half to get the win. 

The Caltech match also saw CMS fall behind 1-0 in the opening minutes, but the Stags answered with goals from Lewis, freshman Andrew Wraith and Blumberg to take a 3-1 lead after the first frame. Caltech had the first goal of the second quarter to close to 3-2, but Rossman, Blumberg and Warmoth scored in succession, and Warmoth added his second with 59 seconds left to make it a 7-3 lead heading into the break. 

The second half saw CMS score five unanswered goals to build its lead to 12-3 in the third, with Rossman getting the first two to finish off his hat trick, followed by goals from senior Matt Daruty, Pine and Lewis. Clark added a fourth quarter tally, before Warmoth finished off his hat trick, and Pine and junior Harrison Miller added conversions to make the final score 16-6. Tran had seven saves and allowed three goals to get his second win of the day, and fellow freshman Noah Smith also had seven saves and three goals allowed. 

CMS returns to action when it steps out of league play to co-host the Gary Troyer Tournament this weekend, hosting Navy and Penn State Behrend on Friday, followed by matches with Johns Hopkins and Pepperdine on Saturday.