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Daily 49er

LBSU places fourth at Big West Tournament

The Big West regular season champion 49ers go winless at the tourney.

Jason Enns, Staff Writer

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The Long Beach State women’s water polo team went 0-2 and placed fourth this weekend in the Big West Tournament, ending their season with a one-point loss against UC Irvine on Sunday.

Both the No. 1 seed LBSU and No. 2 seed UC Irvine fell on Saturday, the 49ers to Hawai’i and Irvine to host UC Santa Barbara.

Saturday’s semifinal matchup started off as a stalemate with both the 49ers and Rainbow Wahine playing heavy defense.

Sophomore center Emily Garczynski was able to sneak in the first goal of the match with just 1:37 left in the half, but Hawai’i’s Femke Aan managed to even the score at 1-1 just before the half ended.

The Rainbow Wahine changed the pace in the second half scoring three in the first three minutes, but LBSU’s sophomore utility Virginia Smith and freshman attacker Tori Morrissey answered with a goal each to cut the score to 4-3.

Senior attacker Jessica Brooks tied it at 4-4 with only 3:20 left in the game, but the ‘Bow’s Irene Gonzalez put in back-to-back goals securing Hawai’i’s 6-4 victory and their advancement into the championship game.

On Sunday, the 49ers lost to Irvine 7-6 after two overtime periods. It’s the second time this season LBSU came up only one point shy of the Anteaters.

LBSU came out strong against Irvine, getting two quick goals to start the match. The Anteaters rebutted with two of their own, but Smith and Morrissey gave the 49ers a 4-2 lead before going into the second.

The ‘Eaters kept themselves in the game in the second half, tying LBSU at 4-4 and then again at 5-5 after Brooks’ goal on a power play. Irvine made the first goal in overtime but the 49ers were able to answer to send the game into a second overtime at 6-6.

Irvine’s Emily Carlson finally got the difference maker, scoring the ‘Eaters’ seventh with just :27 left, securing UC Irvine’s third place victory.

UCSB and Hawai’i played for the championship Sunday after the 49ers battled for third against the Anteaters. The Gauchos beat the Rainbow Wahine to claim their first Big West Tournament title and an automatic qualification into the NCAA Tournament.

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