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Tigers Drop Season Opener To No. 4 California

Jan 19, 2013

The Pacific women's water polo program opened its 2013 campaign and the James Graham era Saturday, Jan. 19, welcoming No. 4 California to the Chris Kjeldsen Aquatics Complex. The Tigers hung with the visiting Golden Bears through the first half but fell, 14-4, after being stymied for much of the second half.

Sophomore Brydie Pye led Pacific with a pair of scores. Fellow sophomores Taylor Adair and Kelsey Carter each added one goal.

Junior goalkeeper Michele Relton kept the Tigers in the game in the first half, recording eight of her 11 saves in the game's opening two frames.

"This game was a big learning experience for us," Graham said. "I thought we did some things really well, but we still have a lot of work to do. Our team did a great job drawing exclusions and attacking Cal. I felt like our front court held up well but our counter attack was a source of frustration for us."

Pacific dropped to 0-1 on the young season while Cal improved to 1-0 with the win.

The Golden Bears took a 2-0 lead into the second quarter before going up by three a little more than one minute into the period. Adair broke the visitors' run with a power-play goal at the 6:05 mark, beating Cal's keeper to the near post. Cal would answer with two more goals, however, to take a 5-1 lead midway through the frame.

Carter converted a rare 6-on-4 advantage for the Tigers with 3:03 on the clock, but the Golden Bears responded with another score to maintain their four-goal lead. Pye netted her first goal of the match on a power play with 42 seconds left, sending the match into intermission with Pacific down, 6-3.

The visitors used a five-goal third quarter to pull away from the Tigers. Pacific's lone goal in the second half came on an advantage play courtesy of Pye at the 3:29 mark of the third quarter. Cal added three more scores in the final frame as it coasted to victory.

Tiera Schroeder led the Golden Bears with three goals. All told, nine different Cal players scored on the day. Goalkeeper Savanna Smith finished with five saves in a complete game effort.

Pacific is back in action next weekend at the UC Santa Barbara Winter Invitational. The Tigers open the weekend with a 9:30 a.m. tilt versus No. 3 UCLA on Saturday, Jan. 26.

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