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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Men’s water polo cool with 4th-place finish

    The No. 4 Arizona men’s club water polo team placed fourth overall against tough competition from across the nation in this weekend’s UC Davis Open Tournament.

    “”It was a crazy weekend,”” said team president Alex Kane. “”It was an extremely, extremely physical tournament. The refs let a lot play go. It was like fighting in the water left and right, but we played amazing.””

    Kane offered his dislocated left shoulder as proof of the battles his team waged all weekend. He suffered the injury at the beginning of the second quarter of Arizona’s final game.

    “”It was really good tournament except for that,”” said Kane, who expects to be ready for the team’s next tournament in two weeks.

    Three Wildcats took home All-Tournament Team honors. Driver Alex Negronida and whole set David Jacobs were named to the first team, and driver Todd Carpenter to the second team.

    Arizona opened the event by sweeping its three games in group play. The Wildcats defeated San Jose State 16-6 and Michigan 15-7 on Friday. They continued their winning ways Saturday, beating No. 18 Santa Barbara 9-8.

    Arizona’s 3-0 start earned the team a spot in the quarterfinals, where it won 17-9 against Texas in a rematch of last year’s national championship quarterfinals, which the Wildcats also won.

    Santa Rosa Community College, last year’s California junior college champions, eliminated Arizona 13-10 in the semifinals. The Wildcats scored more goals against Santa Rosa than any other team in the tournament.

    The Wildcats finished by losing 9-8 to No. 1 Michigan State, last year’s national champions.

    Given the highly-decorated competition the team faced in its final two games and the close scores, Kane said he considered the team’s fourth-place showing “”a moral victory.””

    Water polo’s next challenge comes in two weeks at the second of two Southwest Division tournaments. The event will be held at ASU and will help determine the seeding for October’s Southwest Division Championships in Tucson.

    “”We feel that we made huge leaps and strides towards where we need to be come nationals,”” Kane said. “”We feel that we’re a much stronger team because of this weekend and a better team going into ASU.””

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