Weekend of Winners
At USC, the sport that is most closely associated with the Trojan moniker is, and will always be, football.
But once the winter subsides and the spring arrives, football is withheld to a few spring practices, while other sports are in full swing weathering not only the rising heat, but the heat of competition as well.
That full swing was on full display this past Friday and Saturday, as the men and women of Troy impressed on the diamond, the court, the field, the sand and even the pool, going a pristine 10–0 in all of their matches.
How did they do it? Here’s the rundown:
Friday, April 3.
1:00 PM — Women’s Lacrosse at Oregon
FINAL SCORE: 13–11, USC.
The East-Coast heavy lacrosse squad kicked things off early on Saturday when they traveled to take on the Ducks where the Women of Troy bounced back from their third loss of the season with a hard-fought victory over their MPSF conference foes.
On Friday, it was the sophomore skill of Michaela Michaels and Cynthia Del Core, who both scored four goals a piece, that led the team to their fourth conference win — opposite zero current defeats. The Women of Troy left Eugene with a win and inadvertently became the initial catalysts for a perfect two-day stretch.
1:30 PM — Women’s Tennis at Arizona
FINAL: 5–2 (games), USC.
Speaking of a perfect conference record, the No. 1 women’s tennis squad saw to it that they would not flame out in the Arizona desert by kicking off their weekend taking care of the Wildcats in Tucson.
Domination has been these Women of Troy’s preferred style of victory and Friday’s performance was no less than that, as they took the first five points from Arizona swiftly thanks to Madison Westby, Zoë Katz and Meredith Xepoleas — whose literally flawless play rendered three shutouts in the singles matches.
3:00 PM — Men’s Tennis vs. Utah
FINAL 7–0 (games), USC.
The men on the tennis court must have taken the women’s performance as a form of challenge. Their score against Utah certainly appears that way.
The No. 7 Trojans stayed home at Marks Stadium this weekend, but welcomed — er, dispatched the Utes commandingly. Be it doubles or singles, the matches were all taken care of handily by the likes of Roberto Quiroz and Jonny Wang, among many others.
6:00 PM — Baseball at Arizona
FINAL: 13–6, USC.
The nightcap on the first day of Trojan success saw the pleasant surprise that has been USC’s baseball team explode for 13 runs against conference foe Arizona.
From Bobby Stahel’s four hits to Reggie Southhall’s four RBIs, to the team’s season-high 18 hits, starter Kyle Twomey had only to sit back and hold the opposition to relatively normal run total to earn the W. A decisive one at that, as having also beat the Wildcats the night before meant the Trojans had earned the series win — their third straight one on the road.
Saturday, April 4.
10:00 AM — Women’s Sand Volleyball at Pepperdine
FINAL: 3–2 , USC.
In case you haven’t heard, USC’s sand volleyball team is No. 1 in the country and have yet to encounter a loss in their season. After Saturday’s competitive match against the No. 3 Pepperdine Waves in Zuma Beach, the Women of Troy now boast a 15–0 record, more than living up to their perennial ranking.
12:00 PM — Women’s Water Polo at Cal
FINAL: 6–5, USC.
The pool was also a place of contention on Saturday, as USC’s women’s water polo team traveled up to Berkeley hoping to extend their five game winning streak.
The No. 3 squad in the nation had seemingly met their match in the No. 4 Lady Bears, falling behind by a score of 4–2 before senior Monica Vavud went on a three-goal scoring rampage to pull the Women of Troy ahead for good.
12:00 PM — Baseball at Arizona
FINAL: 10–9, USC.
The third game of the series in the desert was simply the icing on the cake for USC Baseball, as they had already clinched the series, but decided a sweep would be more to their liking.
In an attempt to keep everyone on their toes, the Trojans made this one into an exciting comeback that had them down 5–1 at one point. After getting RBI contributions from all over the lineup, the tug of war between the two squads subsided when David Oppenheim’s single drove in the tenth, and winning run in the top of the ninth. Yet another victory for the scorching Trojans, and one that sets up a great showdown against the Bruins this coming weekend.
12:00 PM — Women’s Tennis at Arizona St.
FINAL: 5–2(games), USC.
The Saturday affairs in Arizona continued in Tempe, where women’s tennis was back in action, once again coming out victorious by a 5–2 final score.
After ripping off three straight singles victories, junior Giulana Olmos clinched thE match over the Sun Devils, and subsequently gave the Women of Troy their eighth straight victory, keeping their Pac-12 record intact and their ranking on top.
1:00 PM — Men’s Tennis vs. Arizona
FINAL: 6–1 (games), USC.
Men’s tennis continued to defend the fort at home by dominating the Sun Devils en route to their fifth straight victory.
Eric Johnson and Roberto Quiroz were the standouts in this one, dropping only one or two points in their singles matches to lead the Trojans, who also maintained their perfect conference record.
7:30 PM — Men’s Volleyball at Stanford
FINAL: 3–0 (sets), USC.
Last but not least, as countless of people around the country tuned into the Final Four, USC’s men’s volleyball team made quick, undeterred work of the Stanford Cardinal with a resounding sweep.
Senior Alex Slaught and his 16 kills was the leading agent in the rout where the No. 7 Trojans were in control from start to finish. Bouncing back from their loss against Pepperdine resoundingly and successfully, the Trojans echoed the dominating sentiment USC Athletics exuded throughout the entire weekend and were the final act in perfect, two-day run.
A uneventful, game-less Easter Sunday was both fitting and well-deserved for all those in the cardinal and gold, but a new week begins Monday and though the forecast calls for an incoming storm, the heat of the competition will only rise more from here on out.