No. 5 Gauchos Fall to No. 1 UCLA, 11-4

Jesse Gillespie (By Ron Robertson)
Jesse Gillespie (By Ron Robertson)

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – No. 5 UC Santa Barbara was unable to overcome No. 1 UCLA, falling 11-4 in both teams' final regular season contest on Saturday afternoon at the Bruins' Spieker Aquatics Center.

The Gauchos drop to 15-10 on the season and 3-5 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play while UCLA improved to 20-4 and 6-2 in league play.

UCSB has already secured the fifth seed into next week's MPSF Tournament, which will be held at UCLA from Nov. 25-27. The winner will secure an automatic berth into the NCAA Championships (Dec. 3-4, at Cal).

UCLA grabbed the early lead with consecutive goals from Josh Samuels and Chris Wendt in the first quarter.

The Bruins extended their margin to 4-0 in the opening minutes of the second quarter behind goals from Bret Lathrope and Griffin White.

UCSB finally broke through with a six-on-five goal from Eric Van de Mortel with 3:01 left in the first half. The goal proved to only momentarily break up the Bruin scoring as Paul Reynolds poured in two goals to put UCLA ahead, 6-1 heading into halftime.  

White added his second goal of the game to open the third quarter, but UCSB cut the Bruin advantage to 7-3 with a pair of power play goals from Teddy Zhang and Jesse Gillespie.

UCLA drew a penalty with 3:23 to go in the third and Reynolds converted the free shot to push UCLA's lead to 8-3.

The Bruins outscored the Gauchos, 3-1, in the final quarter to seal up the 11-4 victory.

The four goals are the fewest scored in a game by the Gauchos this season. UCSB went 3-for-9 in its six-on-five opportunities while the Bruins were 3-for-4.

Goalkeeper Myles Christian tallied 10 saves, including six saves in the first half. For the Bruins, Matt Rapacz had six stops and Andrew Mesean had two.

The MPSF Tournament begins at UCLA on Friday, Nov. 25. The fifth-seeded Gauchos will face either UCLA or Stanford in their first round game, which is slated for a 3 pm start.

UCLA 11, UC Santa Barbara 4



















UC Santa Barbara Goals: Scott Bishop, Jesse Gillespie, Eric Van de Mortel, Teddy Zhang
UC Santa Barbara Saves: Myles Christian 10

UCLA Goals: Paul Reynolds 3, Griffin White 2, Luka Bokavsek, David Culpan, Bret Lathrope, Daniel Lenhart, Josh Samuels, Chris Wendt
UCLA Saves: Matt Rapacz 6, Andrew Mesesan 2