The University of Redlands men's water polo team jumped back into the win column with a dominating 17-10 win over the visiting Leopards of the University of La Verne on Wednesday night. The Bulldogs cruised to a 4-0 advantage early in the first period and never trailed in the important Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) victory at the Thompson Aquatic Center.
Redlands initiated the scoring with back-to-back goals by junior center Matt Shippen (Santa Maria, CA), before junior driver Kevin Chapa (Carlsbad, CA) and junior center-defender Max Taylor (Henderson, NV) joined forces for the Maroon and Gray's 4-0 advantage with 5:01 left in the first period.
After the Leopards cut the deficit in half, the Bulldogs continued to fire on all cylinders with Shippen, Chapa, and senior driver Kyle Murata (Brea, CA) combining for the next four goals to close out the opening frame with an 8-2 lead.
Redlands made it a 10-4 game with a quality showing in the second stanza, with senior driver Zac Polmanteer (Long Beach, CA) and freshman driver Spencer Allen (Long Beach, CA) each finding the back of the net.
After senior goalkeeper Chris Sekula (LaGrange, IL) set the tone early with a quality effort, freshman goalkeeper Braeden Shaw (Yorba Linda, CA) secured the Bulldogs' cage by limiting the Leopard offense in the remaining periods. The Maroon and Gray also took care of business on the other end of the pool by firing off seven additional scores to take home the 17-10 win.
Chapa finished with a game-high five netters, while Shippen and Taylor recorded the only other multi-goal showings. In addition, sophomore center Billy Clifford (Redlands, CA), sophomore driver Ty Williams (Rancho Cucamonga, CA), sophomore driver Aki Andersen (Laguna Beach, CA), and junior driver Logan Wright (Ladera Ranch, CA) provided one score apiece to keep the Leopards at bay later in the game.
Redlands (15-14, 4-3 SCIAC) travels to Cal Lutheran University on Saturday, November 12, for an 11 a.m. showdown against the Kingsmen in the final dual-match of the regular season.