Quigley’s Dream For St. Francis Title Falls Short
Carl Quigley’s NCAA Final Four run with the St. Francis Terriers Water Polo team ended in disappointment last Saturday afternoon with a loss to the eventual champions in USC.
Quigley, a Rockaway resident, coached a young team that has jelled together to reach the NCAA Final Four that was played at Bucknell University last weekend. Though St. Francis was game, USC was just too impressive as they won 14-8 to advance to the championship. They eventually defeated Stanford 3-2 for the NCAA title.
St. Francis fell behind early in the game 4-1 at the end of the first period. USC, which finished the year at 27-1, kept the pressure on as they ballooned the lead to 7-1 in the second period.
The Terriers would cut the score when Botond Szalma’s goal with 5:08 left in the third period narrowed the USC lead to 9-5. The Trojans though put the game away when Thomas Hale scored one of his four goals to make it 10-5.
In the consolation game, the Terriers tasted their last defeat of the season as Loyola Marymount won 10-6. Milos Vuksic scored two goals for St. Francis but they did not capture the lead at any point in the game.
St. Francis finished the season at 20-10 but there are still bright spots ahead for next year. Stephan Mudreac, one of the many international players on the squad, will be the only senior to graduate and most of the team’s important players will return next season.
Carl Quigley told the St. Francis College website that his team accomplished plenty this season.
“We showed that the difference between water polo in the east coast and west coast is minimal. We will be back here next year and I think we made a name for ourselves this year. I am proud of all my players and all that they have accomplished. We will always remember this weekend.”