Oct. 7, 2006
Berkeley, Ca - Chalk up a big victory for Stanford over California in men's water polo.
The Cardinal, ranked sixth in the nation, was a decided underdog in their game against the second-ranked Golden Bears on Saturday afternoon at Berkeley, but senior J.J. Garton refused to be beaten. Garton scored a career-high five goals to lead Stanford to a stunning 11-9 victory in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation game.
The Stanford win also gave the Cardinal the Steve Heaston Trophy, given to the winner of the Big Splash each season.
For Garton, his five goals exceeded his previous single game best of three goals last year in a game against NCAA champion USC. Entering today's game, Garton had scored six goals in nine games.
Stanford was also sparked by the second half goalie play of sophomore Jimmie Sandman, who had six blocks in two periods, including blocking of a five-meter penalty shot with 29 seconds left in the match.
Stanford trailed California, 6-5, at halftime, but the Cardinal outscored the Golden Baers, 6-3, in the second half. Down one goal entering the third period, Stanford notched the first two goals in the third period - at 7:05 on a lob shot by Drac Wigo, and then took its first lead of the contest on a shot by Will Hindle-Katel with 5:44 in the third period. Cal was able to tie the match with 2:01 left in the period.
However, Stanford took control the contest for good on a Garton goal with 26 seconds left in the third period, followed by another Garton goal with 7:01 left in the match for a 9-7 lead. Cal was able to get within a single goal twice in the fourth quarter at 5:25 and then again at 2:25. Yet, goals by Michael Bury at 4:42 and 2:05 in the fourth period kept Cal at bay. The final play that doomed Cal was Sandman's block of John Mann's five-meter penalty shot with 29 seconds left in the match.
Stanford broke its four game losing streak to increase its season record to 6-4 overall and 1-1 in the MPSF. Cal fell to 14-2 overall and 0-1 in the league.
Stanford will compete next weekend in the Southern California Tournament at USC.
Stanford (6-4, 1-1 MPSF) 2 3 3 3 = 11
California (14-2, 0-1 MPSF) 3 3 1 2 = 9
Stanford Scorers: Garton 5, Bury 3, A. Drake 1, D. Wigo 1, Hindle-Katel 1
California Scorers: Vasiljevic 3, Mann 2, Sharf 2, Tyrrell 1, Kinsel 1
Goalie Saves: Hohener (S) 3; Sandman (S) 6; Vacquier (C) 7