Late Williams strike lifts Men’s Water Polo past Occidental

Late Williams strike lifts Men’s Water Polo past Occidental

LOS ANGELES — Troy Williams scored with three seconds remaining in the game to give the University of La Verne men's water polo team a 13-12 win over Occidental on Wednesday evening at Taylor Pool.

La Verne improves to 6-15 overall and 2-3 in SCIAC play. Oxy falls to 2-16 and 0-15.

The Leopards used a big second quarter to get out to a 9-5 lead at the break and needed every bit of the advantage to hold off the Tigers.

The game started out evenly as the teams split the first 10 points but the Leopards went on a 4-0 run to grab the halftime lead. Makai DeNeve-Arnam broke the 5-5 tie at the 3:46 mark in the second quarter and Andrew Phillips followed just 40 seconds later to give the Leopards a 7-5 lead. Joshua Vega and Bryan Jimenez each chipped in a goal to close the first half.

Oxy outscored La Verne, 4-2, in the third quarter and made a push. The Tigers claimed the first two points of the fourth quarter to tie the game at 11-11 and looked to have all the momentum behind them. But Jared Hopley stemmed the tide with a goal at the 4:55 mark and both teams locked down defensively.

Oxy's Matt Weiser tied it again with just over a minute left, but the Leopards held on the rest of the way and Williams was able to find the winner.

La Verne returns to action on Saturday at home against Pomona-Pitzer.