WESTWOOD, CALIF. — The No. 1 USC women’s water polo team unleashed a season-high 24 goals on the hands of a season-high 11 scorers to ensure the Trojans a spot in the NCAA semifinals with today’s 24-5 victory over Marist in quarterfinal action at UCLA’s Spieker Aquatics Center. Three Trojans — Maud Megens, Denise Mammolito and Bayley Weber — ripped in four goals apiece to help keep up USC’s powerful pace. In doing so, both Megens and Mammolito are now together on USC’s top-10 all-time scoring list, ranked No. 8 and No. 10, respectively, as they look to also lead their Trojan teammates to another national championship. Now 20-1 overall, USC lines up for the NCAA semifinals tomorrow (May 15) at 3 p.m. against Arizona State or Michigan.
All 16 Trojans had a hand in the quarterfinal win, registering either a goal or an assist on the offensive end, while goalies Holly Parker and Carolyne Stern split time in the cage. Maud Megens had a hat trick in place by the end of the first frame as USC rattled in seven goals in the first eight minutes to lead it 7-3. Another seven Trojan goals poured out in the second period. This time, it was Denise Mammolito who punched up three goals in that stretch, while Julia Janov and Bayley Weber collected their second goals of the half to help craft a 14-4 USC lead by halftime.
In the third, it was all USC. While the Trojan defense shut out the Red Foxes, Megens, Mammolito and Weber all worked their way to they fourth goals of the day. Meanwhile, Verica Bakoc blasted her second, and Hannah Meyer delivered as well to build a 20-4 USC advantage entering the fourth. Only a Marist 5-meter penalty shot would break through in the final eight minutes, and USC fired off four more strikes — Janov’s third of the day, two from Téa Poljak and once from Randi Reinhardt to wrap up a total team effort for the Trojans in punching their ticket to the NCAA semis.
Under the direction of head coach Marko Pintaric, USC is looking for its seventh national championship, having won its last title in 2018.
2021 NATIONAL COLLEGIATE WOMEN’S WATER POLO CHAMPIONSHIP
#1 USC 24, #21 Marist 5
May 14, 2021 | Spieker Aquatics Center (Westwood, Calif.)