Sept. 21, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - The Navy water polo team came up short on the opening day of CWPA league play with a 8-6 setback versus #18 Bucknell and a 12-7 defeat to #13 Princeton at the Scott Natatorium on Saturday.
Sophomores Lucas MacLellan (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and Will Weggeland (Riverside, Calif.) led Navy’s offensive performers as they each registered three goals on Saturday. On the defensive side of the ball, sophomore goalkeeper Garrett Sabesky (Lakeside, Calif.) made a combined 19 saves versus the Bison and Tigers.
In the first contest of the day, the Mids came out fast versus Bucknell with a MacLellan goal just 30 seconds in at the 7:30 mark of the first quarter. After Bucknell’s goalie Keegan Williams turned aside multiple Navy shots to keep it a one-goal margin, the Bison closed the final 90 seconds of the first period with back-to-back tallies.
With the score 2-1 in favor of Bucknell, MacLellan notched his second goal of the game 54 seconds into the second quarter after a receiving a pass from Weggeland.
In a 1:39 span of play between 5:02 and 3:23, the Bison scored three unanswered goals and took a lead that they would never relinquish for the remainder of the game.
Two consecutive goals by Carl Dowzicky (So., Collegeville, Pa.) within a minute of each other at 1:14 and 0:16 would tighten the contest to a 5-4 mark at halftime.
After the teams combined for six goals in the second quarter, defense was the story of the third quarter. Each team netted singular goals with Bucknell scoring at 6:14 and Navy at 0:04 courtesy of MacLellan.
With the score 6-5 heading into the fourth period, Bucknell put space between them and the Mids with its seventh goal of the game at 5:48. Sophomore Carpenter Warren (Baltimore, Md.) nearly cut into the lead, but his attempt at 4:11 rocked off of the post to deny the Mids.
After Nick Hale scored his third goal at 3:56 for the Bison, Weggeland notched the game’s final score at 1:16 when he took a pass from junior Jack Finch (San Mateo, Calif.).
In the 8-6 defeat, Garrett Sabesky showed strong in net with 10 saves and three steals.
Coming back to the Scott Natatorium for an 8 p.m. showdown with Princeton, the Mids started fast once again as they jumped out to a 2-0 lead by the 2:46 mark of the first quarter. Navy took advantage of man-up situations on back-to-back possessions as Weggeland and Andrew Lacosse (Sr., Owings, Md.) converted for goals.
Princeton closed the first quarter out with two unanswered goals to tie the game at 2-2.
In a quiet second quarter, the teams combined for just three goals as Navy went ahead 3-2 on a Weggeland goal at 7:46 before the Tigers took their first lead of the game with consecutive goals to conclude the first half. Strong defending helped minimize the scoring in the period as Princeton’s goalkeeper Alex Gow denied a Weggeland breakaway at 6:45, while Sabesky turned aside a Princeton shot on goal in a man-up situation at 1:45.
The third quarter was all about Princeton as the Tigers outscored Navy 4-1 to go ahead 8-4 going into the fourth. Warren netted the Mids’ lone goal as he took a pass from Robert Sutherland
(So., Denton, Texas) and beat Gow for the power play score.
The teams combined for seven goals in the final quarter with Princeton expanding its lead to a final 12-7 margin. Warren, Christian Macias
(Mission Viejo, Calif.) and Jared Griffin
(Arnold, Md.) all scored for Navy in the fourth period.
Post-game Associate Head Coach Mladen Stanicic
remarked that “in both games we had good moments; we had a great start versus Princeton, but unfortunately we had mistakes that swung the momentum in our opponents favor, our spirits fell and we had a hard time recovering. It still early in the season, and we know that this is a talented group. We look forward to picking up our level of play, practiculary when we get our full roster back from injuries. We have some things to clean up and will get back at it tomorrow.”
The Mids (8-7) will close out their opening weekend of CWPA play with road contests at George Washington at 11 a.m. and at Johns Hopkins at 4 p.m.