Sixth-ranked California scored two goals in the last two minutes of the game to defeat No. 9 UC Irvine, 12-10, in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation game at Anteater Aquatics Complex Thursday night.
Junior Bojan Hrlec scored four goals for the ‘Eaters (14-8, 0-5 MSPF) in the see-saw game that was tied nine times.
Colin Mulcahy’s goal with 1:47 remaining proved to be the game-winner and Hunter Gettelfinger scored his fourth goal of the night in the final second as the Bears improved to 11-7 overall and 2-3 in league.
Gettelfinger’s goal with 5:16 left in the third quarter gave Cal an 8-7 lead and Marin Balarin’s extra-man score early in the fourth period extended the lead to 9-7, but Nick Pfeil (5:22) and Hrlec (4:41) responded to pull UCI even at 9-9.
Aleksa Saponjic scored with 3:04 remaining for a 10-9 Bear lead, but Hrlec’s final score of the night on a power-play goal knotted the game at 10-10 before the late goals by Cal.
UCI plays its home finale Friday night, hosting Pacific at 7:00 in an MPSF contest. ‘Eater seniors Kyle Adama, Winston Newland, Nick Pfeil and Brian Pickford will be recognized prior to the game.
California 2 – 4 – 2 – 4 — 12
UC Irvine 2 – 4 – 1 – 3 — 10
Cal: Hunter Gettelfinger 4, Aleksa Saponjic 3, Collin Smith 2, Marin Balarin 2, Colin Mulcahy.
UCI: Bojan Hrlec 4, Jacob Mourer 2, Nick Pfeil 2, Mitch Wise, Winston Newland.
Saves: Jon Sibley (Cal) 6; Alex Kazmier (UCI) 8.