The UCSB men’s water polo team has entered a hot stretch of play in recent weeks as they began a promising season winning the first 6 matches of 9. Following the 6 wins, they went on to lose 6 of their next 7 games, putting their overall record at 6-9 on the season.
October was a sign of change, as the Gauchos followed a tough loss against the University of California, Berkeley by going on to win 4 straight matches to date.
Hosted in Riverside, California the Gauchos were in the Lancer Joust Tournament, where they dominated Fresno Pacific University to begin the tournament.
This match showed how lethal the Gauchos’ attack could be if hitting on all cylinders, as it featured 11 different goal scorers in their 20-8 victory. The man of the match was Adam Gyenis, who managed to score 5 goals in the match.
The Gauchos next match featured stiffer competition, with UCSB barely securing an 11-9 win against Cuesta College. This was a frustrating match for the Gauchos because as they gained momentum throughout the match, Cuesta was able to rally back into the match on each occasion. UCSB led 4-1 and 10-4 before Cuesta made it a 3-4 match early and 8-10 match in the fourth period.
In their final exhibition of the Lancer Joust Tournament, the Gauchos came from behind to beat the University of Toronto 16-12. The Gauchos got off on the wrong foot against Toronto, getting behind 2-5 in the first period.
After an early third period goal to Toronto, UCSB was able to flip the script the rest of the third quarter, gaining a 12-11 lead headed into the fourth period. The hat trick heroes lead the way for the Gauchos as Henry Allen, Logan Sutter and Ryan Brosnan each netted at least 3 goals, with Brosnan getting 4.
Their most recent victory in the four-game winning streak was a 9-6 victory versus a talented No. 10 ranked Loyola Marymount University. The UCSB offense came alive early against LMU, getting out to a 3-0 lead in the match. A trio of Dash McFarland, Colton Gregory, James Oriskovich and Will Coons provided the scoring that would give the Gauchos a 4-1 lead headed into the second half.
The third and fourth periods were dominated by the Gauchos having a 4-2 advantage, led by two goals from Brosnan. LMU was also unable to gain success versus the UCSB goalkeeper Danny Roland, who made 15 saves while allowing just three to pass him.
UCSB’s break against league play will continue as they go on to play Princeton University at home on Oct. 16 and an away game against UCLA on Oct. 20 before hosting their next league game versus UC Irvine on Oct. 22.
A version of this article appeared on p. 7 of the October 13, 2022 print edition of the Daily Nexus.