REDLANDS, Calif. (Nov. 22, 2014) – Sophomore Chris Bradley (Half Moon Bay, Calif. / Serra) capped the Caltech men's water polo team's season with his 25th hat trick as the Beavers fell, 20-7, to the University of La Verne on the second day of the SCIAC Championships on Saturday morning.
Bradley notched three goals to end the season on 131 goals, establishing a new program mark after eclipsing David Bruning's 1986 record of 117. Senior Ben Grabowski (Lake Forest Park, Wash. / Inglemoor) made nine saves in his final game as a Beaver to set new program marks in both single-season saves (346) and career saves (1,020).
La Verne opened the scoring on the first possession of the match, but Caltech quickly turned the tables as junior Jim Blackwood (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. / Palos Verdes Peninsula) registered back-to-back goals to take the 2-1 lead. The Leopards recovered to regain the lead just a minute later, but Bradley evened things up on his first strike of the day with 2:13 left in the first quarter. La Verne came back with a penalty goal on the next possession, but once again the Beavers equalized as junior Patric Eck (Fullerton, Calif. / Troy) got on the board with 1:28 to go. Unfortunately for the Beavers, the Leopards mustered a late go-ahead strike to take a 5-4 lead and the momentum into the first break.
That would prove pivotal as La Verne surged ahead over the next two quarters, scoring eight unanswered goals before Eck finally stemmed the tide midway through the third quarter. Bradley came up with his final two goals over the last 11 minutes of the match, but La Verne cruised to the 13-goal victory.