TEMPE, Ariz. – The No. 10 UC Santa Barbara women's water polo team continued its hottest start ever to a season on Sunday, topping No. 7 Arizona State 11-10 and Iona 14-0 on the final day of the ASU Cross Conference Challenge.
The Gauchos (9-1) improved to 3-1 against higher ranked opponents this year with their 11-10 win over the tournament host Sun Devils, coming out on top in a back-and-forth affair which went down to the final minutes.
In a game that saw five ties and three lead changes, senior Shannon Moran's go-ahead goal with 5:11 left in the game put UCSB on top for good. Freshman Amanda Legaspi's goal less than a minute later – her third of the game – would give UCSB the breathing room it needed to hold on to the slim victory.
Senior Sarah Kreiser and sophomore Mollie Simmons both finished with multi-goal performances of their own, scoring twice each. Kelly Murphy, Kate Pipkin and Kate Coski all scored once as well, helping the Gauchos to a one-goal margin of victory for the second straight day.
While Sunday's first game would see UCSB earn its closest win of the year, its final game of the weekend would be the most lopsided yet. Earning their first shutout of the year in overwhelming fashion, the Gauchos would put at least three goals in every period, including five in the second quarter to take an 8-0 lead at halftime.
Legaspi once again finished with a hat trick to lead the way, securing all three scores over the opening 16 minutes. Coski and freshman Dani Kauahi were the only other Gauchos to score more than once, adding two goals apiece.
The Gauchos will be in San Diego next weekend for four games at the Triton Invitational, beginning with a Saturday matchup against No. 21 UC San Diego.