SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The UC Santa Barbara men's water polo team opened its 2019 season with a pair of victories in the first day of the 2019 Triton Invitational on Saturday.
Game 1 – No. 7 UC Santa Barbara 12, Concordia 7
After a tight first quarter that saw Concordia finish with a 3-2 lead, the Gauchos roared back with six goals, split evenly among six different players, to lead 8-5 at the half. UCSB would eventually win by a five-goal margin, 12-7, after outscoring Concordia 4-2 in the second half.
Senior goalkeeper Justyn Barrios made two saves in the season opener.
Game 2 – No. 7 UC Santa Barbara 11, No. 7 Pepperdine 5
In a battle of preseason Golden Coast Conference favorites, the Gauchos powered past No. 7 Pepperdine thanks in no small part to goalkeeper Danny Roland's ten saves, two of which came when the Waves had the man advantage.
Pepperdine cut the Gauchos' lead to 4-3 by scoring the first two goals of the second quarter, but senior utility Ivan Gvozdanovic's goal with 2:55 left in the half and sophomore attacker Tommy Hawkins' pair of goals in the final minute before halftime saw UCSB take a 7-4 lead into the break.
Santa Barbara added a pair of goals via redshirt freshman center Adam Lott and sophomore driver Nathan Puentes in the third quarter, and junior attacker Alan Peoples and junior defender Mason McQuet's fourth-quarter scores cemented the win.
The Gauchos play two more games in the 2019 Triton Invitational tomorrow, beginning with No. 4 Cal at 11:10 a.m. Follow the Gauchos' progress in the tournament here.