Water polo drops two at Harvard

Lindsay Regruto

Senior Writer

The women’s water polo team opened the Harvard Invitational with a 14-5 win against George Washington on March 3 but could not sustain its five-game winning streak falling to Harvard 13-8 and Iona 13-11 later on.

In their contest against Iona, the Bison started off close with the Orange and Blue in the lead, 4-3, at the end of the first period. The Gaels had pulled ahead by one goal by the end of the third period. Julianne Valdes ’14 posted three goals while teammates Becca Shopiro ’12, Tara Murao ’13, and Taylor Barnett ’15 found the net twice.

Hallie Kennan ’12 had a career-high five assists and scored six points, the most by any player this year. Despite a powerful offense, the Bison couldn’t close the gap in the end. Rena Heim ’14 concluded the weekend with a total of seven saves moving her into fifth place on the program’s career saves list with a total of 238 saves.

“It was a close game throughout,” Valdes said. “Although it ended in a tough loss, we know what we need to work on as a team as well as individually in order to win games like that.”

Harvard proved to be a tough opponent and the Bison closed the day with a 13-8 loss. The Orange and Blue got off to a slow start with the Crimson pulling ahead 8-4 by halftime. The Bison outscored Harvard 3-2 in the third period but couldn’t catch up. Amanda Skonezney ’12, Barnett, Kennan, Morgan and Valdes each posted two or more goals for the Bison.

“I don’t think we lost to Harvard because we lacked the skill, we just lacked the confidence,” Kennan said. “We lost to them earlier in the season and I think that made us a little fearful when we crossed them again. What we need to remember is that we are a much different team than we were even just a month ago. Our strategies and skills have improved a lot from our practices and we have everything we need to beat a team like them.”

The Orange and Blue offense came out strong on Saturday outscoring George Washington in every period. By halftime, the Bison had taken a 7-2 lead over the Colonials. Valdes and Barnett had three goals each and Kennan and Morgan scored twice.

The Orange and Blue will travel to Bakersfield, Calif. on March 10 for the Roadrunner Invitational. The Bison will face Azusa Pacific, Fresno Pacific, Long Beach State, CSU Bakersfield, Cal State Northridge and UC Santa Barbara.



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