LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Sophomore Christian Thornton and freshman William Clark each had three goals, and freshman goalies Matt Tran and Noah Smith each had eight saves, as the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's water polo team improved to 7-0 in the SCIAC with a 13-7 road win over Occidental on Thursday afternoon.
With the win, the Stags now stand at 12-5 on the season, with all five losses coming to Division I teams currently ranked in the top 16 in the country (including No. 1 USC, and a one-goal defeat to No. 6 Pepperdine).
Clark added two assists to his three-goal output, while freshman Peter Blumberg, junior Charlie Thomson, sophomore CJ Box, sophomore Koss Klobucher, sophomore Barron Banta, and freshman Sam Harrison each had a goal as well.
Occidental hung in for a while, and found itself down just 4-2 midway through the second quarter. Box then scored on a 6-on-5 off a feed from freshman Andrew Wraith, and Clark followed with a goal off an assist from senior Matt Daruty to stretch the lead to 6-2. Klobucher scored off a Blumberg assist to make it a four-goal lead again, but Occidental scored the final goal of the period to make it a 7-4 game heading into intermission.
As they often have this season, the Stags came out after halftime and turned up their level of play, outscoring the Tigers 4-1 in the third to take control. Clark got things started on the first possession of the third quarter to stretch the lead to 8-4, then fed Thornton for a goal just 48 seconds into the half to quickly make it 9-4. After Occidental got the next goal, Clark found Thornton again, and then Thornton finished off his third-quarter hat trick with an unassisted tally with 3:43 left to make the score 11-5.
Blumberg's goal early in the fourth gave CMS its largest lead at 12-5, before Occidental scored the next two to take a small chip out of the deficit. Banta, though, capped off the scoring to make the final 13-7.
Tran got the win in goal, finishing with eight saves and allowing four goals. Smith played the second half and kept up the same standard, tallying eight saves and allowing only three goals.
CMS will be back in action on Saturday for a tough road contest at Chapman, beginning at 11 a.m.