Local Rivals Bookend Weekend Men's water polo will take on school rival Pepperdine in first PCH Cup match-up in Malibu on Saturday, before home opener on Sunday against No. 4 USC at 1 p.m.
Ikaika Aki was named the WWPA Player of the Week for Sept. 8.
Sept. 10, 2010
The second week of play in the 2010 college water polo season will have the eighth-ranked Lions take on a pair of top-10 local rivals in back-to-back contests. The Lions will travel to Maibu to take on school rival and ninth-ranked Pepperdine in the first PCH Cup contest of the season on Saturday, Sept. 11 at 12 noon. The Lions will then play their home opener at the Burns Aquatics Center against the defending national champions, fourth-ranked USC, on Sunday at 1 p.m.
INSIDE THE LIONS
The eighth-ranked Lions began the 2010 season with a 3-1 mark, earning three straight wins against Western Water Polo Association foes at the 2010 Triton Invitational. After giving up nine goals in a 9-7 setback to Pacific, who is currently ranked sixth in the nation, the Lions rebounded by allowing just nine goals combined in the final three games of the tournament, defeating No. 11 UC San Diego (7-3), No. 19 Air Force (10-3) and La Verne (21-3). After being one of the nation's leaders all 2009 in defense, allowing just 6.13 per game, the Lions enter the weekend allowing just 4.50 goals. Three-time All-American goalie Andy Stevens is a big reason why, tallying 38 saves in 12 quarters (3 games) of action. Fellow All-American Ikaika Aki provides big help in front of the net, opening the season with seven field blocks, five steals and then spear-heading the offense with eight assists. He added three goals in the opening weekend to earn the WWPA Player of the Week for Sept. 8. Another three-time All-American, senior Tibor Forai, led the Lions with 10 goals in the opening weekend. The Lions fourth returning All-American, junior Edgaras Asajavicius, is second on the team with seven goals.