MALIBU, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara (14-7, 2-2 MPSF) outlasted Pepperdine in an overtime thriller on Sunday, coming from behind to win a grueling match. Ten Gauchos scored in an offensive shootout at Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool in Malibu.
No. 5 UCSB started the game with a goal from sophomore Scott Bishop with 3:57 remaining in the first quarter. That goal seemed to open the match up, as the next three minutes had a flurry of goals from both teams. With a 3-3 tie at the start of the second quarter, No. 6 Pepperdine kept putting pressure on the Gaucho defense. Mike Tragitt scored twice in the quarter for the Waves, who took a 7-4 lead into the break.
After not ending the first half strong, UCSB came out of halftime a new team. Sophomore Lazar Komadinic scored just 19 seconds into the third quarter, giving UCSB an offensive spark. Sophomore Matt Gronow nailed a penalty shot at the 4:39 mark and freshman Bryce Miller scored soon after to tie the game.
Deadlocked at 8-8 entering the fourth, both teams came out with a passion. Each scored twice within three minutes, with Pepperdine's Matt DeTrane scoring with 5:01 left to tie the game at 10 all. Two more scores from the Waves, including another by Tragitt, made UCSB's Head Coach Wolf Wigo call a timeout with 1:44 remaining. Whatever Coach Wigo said to his team worked, as freshman Eric Van de Mortel scored with 1:05 left to bring the Gauchos within one. After another timeout, junior Jesse Gillespie found the Gauchos' leading scorer Matt Gronow for the tying goal with 21 seconds left.
The Gauchos struck first in overtime, as freshman Derek Shoemaker scored with 2:36 remaining in the first overtime. Pepperdine was not to be denied however, scoring twice; including a Matt DeTrane goal with 12 second left, to take a 14-13 lead into the second overtime period.
With fatigue setting in, UCSB showed why they are the No. 5 team in the nation in the second OT. Gronow scored, again assisted by Gillespie, with 2:42 remaining to tie the game. Then at the 1:55 mark, freshman Nick Tomasello tipped an intended pass to himself into the net for the go ahead goal. Freshman Liam Gaughan scored with 1:02 left to give the Gauchos some breathing room, and they hung on for the 16-15 victory.
Myles Christian had eight saves for UCSB in a thrilling match. Next match for the Gauchos is this weekend in Santa Barbara, where they face California on Saturday and Pacific on Sunday.
1 2 3 4 OT1 OT2 Total
UCSB 3 1 4 4 1 3 16
Pepperdine 3 4 1 4 2 1 15
UCSB Goals: Komadinic 3, Gronow 3, Bishop 2, B. Miller 2, B. Shoemaker, D. Shoemaker, Zhang, Van de Mortel, Tomasello, Gaughan
UCSB Goalkeeper Saves: Christian 10
Pepperdine Goals: Milcovich 3, Tragitt 3, Picone 3, DeTrane, 2, Hewko 2, Loomis, Cooper
Pepperdine Goalkeeper Saves: Valics 11