Stanford Regains #1 Spot in Men’s Water Polo, Whittier Makes Top 20 Debut

After a week at #3, Stanford regained the #1 spot in the collegiate water polo Top 20. The Cardinal won the So Cal Invitational title, defeating RV Air Force (18-1) on Friday, #8 Long Beach State (14-13) and #4 Pacific (15-14) on Saturday, and topping #2 UCLA (13-9) in the championship game.

Ben Hallock racked up 14 goals to lead the Cardinal, notching five scores vs. Air Force, one against Long Beach State, six against Pacific, and two more in the title game vs. the Bruins.

UCLA held on to the #2 spot it has occupied since the preseason poll with a 3-1 effort at home, besting RV Pomona Pitzer (12-2), #7 Cal (12-9) and then #1 UC Santa Barbara (9-8). Ashworth Molthen tallied 10 goals to lead the Bruins, including hat tricks vs. UCSB and Stanford.

Pacific, UC Santa Barbara and USC round out the top five.

Pacific moved up from #4 to #3 with wins over then-#1 UCSB (11-10), #5 USC (16-15) and #13 Loyola Marymount. Luke Pavillard racked up six goals vs. LMU, four against USC and three vs. Stanford to pace the Tigers.

The loss to Pacific, coupled with a second against #2 UCLA (9-8), dropped UC Santa Barbara from the first #1 ranking in program history.

#5 USC went 3-1, topping #14 Princeton (14-6), #8 Long Beach State (9-6) and #7 Cal (13-12) to move the defending NCAA champions to 7-2 on the year. Hannes Daube found the back of the net 11 times to buoy the Trojans, including a five-goal effort in the loss to Pacific.

Whittier makes its first appearance in the Top 20 at #20. The Poets were among the vote getters outside the Top 20 on Sept. 18 as well as in the preseason listing. Whittier went 2-0 on the week, downing RV Pomona-Pitzer 9-3 on Wednesday behind a five-goal effort by Dominick Neverez, and topping Cal Lutheran 12-5 on Saturday with goals from 11 different players.

George Washington was the biggest mover of the week, climbing four spots from 19 to 15 with a 3-0 effort, besting #16 Fordham (9-8), Wagner (14-8) and La Salle (19-6). 

Loyola Marymount climbed from 13 to a tie for 10th after a 2-2 showing in Los Angeles. The Lions topped #14 Princeton 15-13 and #10 UC Irvine 14-10 to go with losses to #4 Pacific (19-11) and #9 UC Davis (18-16).

Bucknell also moved up three spots from tied for 17th to 14 despite not playing a game on Week 3. Bucknell actually is off from competition from Sept. 22 through Oct. 12.

Princeton dropped four spots from 14 to a tie for 18th, while Fordham crashed out of the poll from #16 to a place among the vote getters. San Jose State also left the Top 20, after spending Week 3 in the #20 position.

Rank Team Week 3 Poll Points
1 Stanford University 3 98
2 University of California-Los Angeles 2 94
3 University of the Pacific 4 91
4 University of California-Santa Barbara 1 88
5 University of Southern California 5 80
6 University of California 7 74
7 Pepperdine University 6 71
8 Long Beach State University 8 66
9 University of California-San Diego 11 57
10 (T) Loyola Marymount University 13 50
10 (T) University of California-Davis 9 50
12 Harvard University 12 47
13 University of California-Irvine 10 37
14 Bucknell University 17 (T) 24
15 George Washington University 19 23
16 California Baptist University 17 (T) 21
17 St. Francis College Brooklyn 15 20
18 (T) Pomona-Pitzer Colleges RV 18
18 (T) Princeton University 14 18
20 Whittier College NR 11
RV Fordham University 16 7
RV San Jose State University 20 7
RV Brown University RV 2
RV United States Air Force Academy RV 1

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