(Merced, CA) The Mt. SAC Men's Water Polo team traveled North to open the 2023 season and came away with four one-sided wins at the Merced College Tournament on Friday and Saturday, August 25 and 26.
The Mounties opened with wins over Sierra College (18-8) and UC Merced (17-8) on Friday. That was followed by two more wins over Citrus College (21-9) and Diablo Valley (28-6) on Saturday.
The 84-point outburst was led by freshman utility Alex Lopez with 23 goals and 10 steals. Sophomore utility Brandon Fabrega added 15 goals and 10 steals, and sophomore center defender Edward (EJ) Lynch scored 11 goals.
"The highlight was four big wins against some tough teams," Mt. SAC coach Marc Ruh said. "UC Merced looked very tough coming into the game with some very good size and talent. Our kids rose to the occasion and executed very well, throughout the weekend.
"Alex Lopez did a great job on both sides of the ball and Fabrega also really did a great job."
Ruh, who enters his 29th year as head coach this year, has another large roster for 2023 and also added – "Gilloly is a force on both sides of the ball as well, with a very high IQ, and sees the pool very well. Lynch stepped up with some big minutes and big goals, as did Solis and Samaan as center defenders. Other freshmen to watch are Mikey McMillian, George Roby-Unkovich, Ethan Brown and Roman Robles. Sophomore goalie Austin Johnson also had a very big weekend with his first career starts for Mt. SAC."
Mt. SAC will be on the road again this weekend, traveling to the US Air Force Academy to play some very strong teams; Air Force, Army, and NCAA D3 runner-up from last year, Cal Lutheran.
The Mounties will officially play their first game in the new pool complex on Friday, September 8 as they host Cal Tech. Game time is 4:00, which will be followed by an alumni game at 6:00.
Follow Mt. SAC Men's Water Polo on Twitter @mtsacaquatics
For additional information, please contact the Mt. SAC Sports Information Office at 909.274.4630.