PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The Cal Lutheran women's water polo team took down two Division I teams as the Regals knocked off Siena, 11-8, and St. Francis PA, 11-4, on Sunday morning at the Bruno Classic.
The Regals went 3-1 on the weekend, against all Division I opponents, at the two-day event which was hosted by Brown University inside the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center. Cal Lutheran is the No. 2 team in the nation, according to the Collegiate Water Polo Coaches, and proved they are a force to be reckoned with.
Four Regals scored the 11 goals as Cal Lutheran took down its second Division I opponent of the weekend. Sophomore Jessica Diaz, junior Mackenzie Thomas and senior Nikki Roed each recorded a hat trick. Thomas made her three goals on the same amount of shots for the second time in just two days.
Freshman Lexi Rond continued to be a force on the offensive end. She drew a season-high seven exclusions, after recording 11 in the two games yesterday, to give her an impressive 17 through three games. Fellow classmate Kaitlin Gardhouse was second on the team with four drawn ejections. CLU converted on nine of their 16 power plays and held Siena to only 3-for-5 on its opportunities.
The Cal Lutheran defense was on point, led by senior goalkeeper, Bailey Meyer. She played the entire game and made 13 saves. The stingy CLU defense made 14 steals in all, led by Meyer and senior Mardell Ramirez with three each. Gardhouse and Thomas both added two more.
CLU outscored Siena in three of the four quarters by one point each time, which gave the Regals the advantage in the game. Cal Lutheran took the lead after the first quarter and were up 3-2. Both teams scored two in the second and it was 5-4 at the half. The Regals outscored the Saints over the final two quarters and won the game 11-8.
Versus St. Francis PA
The Regal defense showed strength and maturity while only allowing the Red Flash to score a season-low four goals against them. Meyer was in goal all 32 minutes for the second straight game. She tallied 12 saves in the game, giving her 52 on the weekend.
Cal Lutheran held SFU to 0-for-6 on power play opportunities. Christin Hirn, Meyer and Thomas recorded a team-high three steals each. Diaz and Rond tallied two more and four more Regals had one.
Offensively, Rond had a season-high five goals. Senior Megan Seeman was next with two goals and Diaz, Gardhouse, Hirn and Ramirez each added one. CLU moved the ball around well and five different Regals had an assist. Rond recorded a team-high three drawn ejections, and had a total of 21 at the classic. Ramirez, Roed and freshman Susanna Zdolsek each added two.
The Regals opened the game by shutting out St. Francis in the first quarter. Cal Lutheran, on the other hand, scored three times and took the early lead. After both teams scored one goal in the second quarter, CLU had a 4-1 lead at the half. The Violet and Gold broke open the game in the third quarter, outscoring the Red Flash 4-1, and giving them a 8-2 lead heading to the final quarter. CLU outscored SFU in the fourth quarter, 3-2, and won the game 11-4.
Cal Lutheran has two weeks off before their home opener. The Regals host Cal State Northridge and Tornoto in a double header on Wednesday, Feb. 19, at the Samuleson Aquatics Center.
Release by Ryan Jorgenson, Sports Information Director