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Men’s water polo looks to rally in Los Angeles

Stanford takes on four teams in the SoCal Invitational

Redshirt junior Ben Hallock (above) leads the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation in goals scored per game. Hallock will play a key role in ensuring the Cardinal has success this weekend in the SoCal invitational. (HECTOR GARCIA-MOLINA/isiphotos.com)

This Friday through Sunday, the No. 3 men’s water polo (6-1, 0-0 MPSF) will be making a splash at the SoCal Invitational. The first match-up of the tournament for the Cardinal is against the Air Force (7-4, 0-0 WWPA) at 1 p.m. on Friday, followed by two matches on Saturday and a final one on Sunday.

The SoCal Invitational is being held at UCLA and Loyola Marymount, with 16 teams contending for the title of champion. Some of the teams competing include No. 1 USC (4-1, 0-0 MPSF), No. 2 UCLA (6-0, 0-0 MPSF), No. 6 Pacific (6-0, 0-0 GCC) and No. 8 Pepperdine (9-3, 0-0 GCC). Stanford will also get a chance to avenge their loss against No. 4 UCSB (13-0, 0-0 GCC). 

Redshirt junior Ben Hallock headlines the starting lineup, leading the conference with 3.83 goals per game. Hallock is also in second in the MPSF for total goals scored, with 23. Sophomore Quinn Woodhead has tallied six assists thus far, ninth-best in the conference.

Stanford enters the invitational fresh off a 16-8 victory at No. 7 UC Davis, which saw Hallock score a game-high six goals. Senior Bennett Williams added five more in Stanford’s redemptive win after dropping the previous game to a talented, top-ranked UCSB team.

The duo of Williams (19) and junior Tyler Abramson (18) have scored the fifth- and sixth-most goals in the conference, respectively. Their strong attacks will be a sight to watch at the weekend invitational.

On the defensive side of things, senior goalkeeper Andrew Chun ranks fourth in the MPSF for number of saves, with 42. In his most recent showing against UC Davis, Chun made an impressive 10 saves, holding the Aggies to half the goals scored by the Cardinal.

The first of four games for Stanford begins at 1 p.m. on Friday against Air Force.

Contact Nandini Naidu at nnaidu ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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