Fourth-ranked Stanford men’s water polo opened its 2013 home slate with a 20-5 victory over No. 15 Santa Clara Saturday at Avery Aquatic Center.
The Cardinal (8-2) next travels to Orange County to play in the UCI Invitational Oct. 12-13 at UC Irvine. Stanford, the No. 4 seed in the draw, opens Group D play Saturday at 10:50 a.m. against UC Davis. The other two teams comprising Group D are California and UC San Diego.
Bret Bonanni led the Cardinal with six goals in the win, while Griffin Bolan and Alex Bowen each posted a hat trick. Adam Abdulhamid, BJ Churnside and Paul Rudolph each scored twice while Connor Stapleton and Forrest Watkins added a goal apiece.
In goal Scott Platshon went the distance, making five saves for the Cardinal.
Stanford took control of the contest with a 5-0 first-period run after the Broncos took a 1-0 lead. Mark Davis put Santa Clara in front with a shot from the perimeter at 5:49, but Stanford would waste little time with an answer as Watkins equalized just 15 seconds later. The Cardinal would force a quick turnover and then Bonanni would score at the 5:13 mark to put Stanford in front at 2-1.
Bowen scored his first of the game with 2:46 to go in the frame, and in the final minute Bolan scored twice from in front of the cage, making it 5-1 in favor of the Cardinal.
Jimmy Moore got one back for the Broncos in the opening 20 seconds of the second period, as Santa Clara opened the frame on the 6-on-5. The Cardinal would answer with quick goals again, this time as Churnside and Bowen scored within 22 seconds at the 5:03 and 4:41 marks, respectively. The teams would trade goals before the half, at which Stanford held an 8-3 advantage.
Stanford put the game away for all intents and purposes with five straight goals to open the second half. Bonanni scored 40 seconds into the third period, followed by Churnside converting a 6-on-5 chance at the 6:46 mark. Bonanni would get another followed by Rudolph as the Cardinal built a 13-3 lead.
The Cardinal would score a total of eight goals in the frame to take a commanding 16-4 lead. Stanford would go on to score four more times over the final eight minutes to finish off the game.
Santa Clara – 1 2 1 1 = 5
Stanford – 5 3 8 4 = 20
Stanford Goal Scorers: Bonanni 6, Bolan 3, Bowen 3, Abdulhamid 2, Churnside 2, Rudolph 2, Stapleton, Watkins
Santa Clara Goal Scorers: Davis 2, Kochalko, G. McClone, Moore
Goalie Saves: Platshon 7 (S); Pritchett 9, Andrews 3 (SCU)