No. 14 Santa Clara Men's Water Polo Set For Busy Week Of Conference Play
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Santa Clara University men's water polo (15-13; 3-3 WWPA) enters the week ranked No. 14 in the country and will play three road games over the weekend. The Broncos will play on Fri., Nov. 4 at No. 11 UC San Diego at 6 p.m., Sat., Nov. 5 at No. 10 LMU at 1 p.m. and Sun., Nov. 6 at Chapman at Noon. All three games are Western Water Polo Association match-ups.
"We played at home for most of October and I am actually looking forward to getting on the road again. It really allows the team to focus on the games coming up. Every game is important this weekend because they are all conference games that could affect seeding. We need to play hard and stick to our game plan for each team. We know our opponents will feed off the energy of their home crowds, but that should not affect our ability to also play at a high level," said Santa Clara head coach Keith Wilbur. "These are quality teams and this experience will help us in terms of getting used to playing good competition on the road. It also gives us a chance to play in San Diego, in the same pool where our conference championships are being held, and it will benefit us to be familiar with that environment two weeks from now."
Santa Clara faced LMU on Oct. 1 as part of the SoCal Tournament in Long Beach, Calif. The Broncos fell to the Lions 11-10 despite big games from Theo Nasser and Michael Wishart. Nasser scored three goals in the second quarter and four for the game while Wishart recorded 12 blocks.
Santa Clara continues to be led by redshirt sophomore Theo Nasser who already more than doubled his scoring total from last season. Nasser has tallied 38 goals while earning 39 ejections drawn. Seniors Akerland and Case have provided the Broncos with 34 goals each. Fifth-year senior Meistrell leads the team with 36 assists and has 27 steals, good for second on the team. Wishart has had an outstanding senior year registering 260 blocks with 21 assists and 17 steals.
Daley Meistrell's three assists against UC Davis on Oct. 9 broke Jack Wall's mark of 139 as the all-time leader in assists. Case is also eighth all-time in goals scored for the Broncos.
In Santa Clara's 13-4 win on Oct. 23 against Harvard at the Rodeo Tournament Michael Wishart recorded his 1,064th career block to pass Peter Moore for the all-time Santa Clara record. Wishart ended the game with 1,066 blocks and looks to add to his record during the remainder of the season.
Five players have scored their first career goals this season. Jimmy Moore collected his first against California on Sept. 3, while Mark Davis, Kyle Surber and Matt Kochalko all registered their first goals at the Princeton Invtational. C.J. D'Arienzo found the back of the net vs. La Verne at the Aggie Shootout for his first career goal.
Player of the Week
Michael Wishart was named the Sept. 21 WWPA Co-Player of the Week for his outstanding weekend at the annual Nor Cal Tournament. Wishart tallied 49 saves in four games, including a career-high 18 against No. 19 St. Francis. Wishart was also named WWPA player of the week for the week of Oct. 27, 2010.