It was an excellent weekend for the Sydney University Water Polo Club as the men’s and women’s National League teams both came away undefeated.

Both teams were vying for the Grant Simms Cup as they matched up against the UTS Balmain Tigers in the Clash of the Cats at Dawn Fraser Baths on Saturday, 5 December.

It was the season opener for the star-studded Sydney women as they began their campaign to attempt to better their last season’s result of National League runners-up. From the get go it was evident that the Sydney women had put in a big off-season as they came out all guns blazing, finishing the opening quarter with a 5-1 advantage.

It was an extremely tight and physical encounter through the next three quarters; however the Lions managed to pull out the victory, 13-10. Australia representative Hannah Buckling led the Lions in scoring with four goals. Bronte Halligan, Danielle Morrissey, Keesja Gofers and Madeline Rosenthal all bagged two goals each, with Isobel Bishop also chipping in with a goal.

The Sydney men were looking to carry the momentum they built from their 3 wins and 1 loss road trip to Brisbane in the opening round, and were coming up against a UTS side hungry for their first win after starting the season with zero wins from their first two outings. The Lions performed consistently throughout the whole match, scoring two goals in each of the first three quarters and finished strongly with three in the last quarter.

The Lions held UTS scoreless in the third quarter which proved to be the difference in the match, along with Olympian Johnno Cotterill’s superb five goal performance. The two imports were also key contributors, as Goran Tomasevic from Croatia and Michael Rosenthal from the U.S both scored doubles for the Lions.

After securing the Grant Simms Cup in the Clash of the Cats it was onto the UNSW Wests Killer Whales for the women and the UNSW Wests Magpies for the men. It was the first home game for both the men’s and women’s sides so both teams were looking to impress their home fans.

And they did, coming away with an undefeated weekend. The Women’s team won 13-1 over the UNSW West Killer Whales, while the Men’s overcame UNSW Wests, 13-9. This was a hugely important victory as Wests were the team that beat them for the National League title.

The men managed to get on top in the 3rd quarter outscoring the Magpies 4-1 to set up a 10-6 three-quarter time lead. Centre forwards, Goran and Jeremy, did most of the damage, with 3 and 2 goals each and both earning many exclusions.

It’s another big weekend of water polo this coming weekend. Both the men’s and women’s teams will be playing three home games each over the span of three consecutive days. Get down to the Sydney Uni Aquatic Centre to support the Lions on their quests for National League titles.

The details for this weekend’s games are as follows:

Friday, December 4th vs The Adelaide Jets (Women 7:15pm, Men 8:30pm) at the Peter Montgomery Pool in Sydney University’s Sports & Aquatic Centre

Saturday, December 5th vs Victorian Seals (Women 2pm, Men 3:15pm) at the Peter Montgomery Pool in Sydney University’s Sports & Aquatic Centre

Sunday, December 6th vs The Adelaide Jets (Women 2pm, Men 3:15pm) at the Peter Montgomery Pool in Sydney University’s Sports & Aquatic Centre