Nov. 18, 2012
PRINCETON, N.J. -
The No. 17 Navy water polo team's season came to an end on Sunday as No. 14 Brown topped the Midshipmen, 9-8, in overtime in the fifth-place match of the CWPA Eastern Championship in Princeton, N.J. The Mids end the season at 23-6, while the Bears are 29-4.
"First, I want to congratulate and thank our senior class for a tremendous job this fall. Their attitude, work habits and leadership created a great atmosphere around our team," said Navy head coach Mike Schofield. "Going into the season, we had to replace most of last year's team, and these guys didn't miss a beat. They led us to the regular season divisional championship and won it by two games.
"Our postseason was a different story, unfortunately, and I'll take responsibility. Teams need to be ready to elevate their play to a higher level at the end of the year and we simply didn't do that. The effort was there, but we didn't find that higher gear when we needed it. We'll look at some things and get to work at making some improvements this spring."
With Navy leading, 7-6, in the final minute of the fourth quarter, Brown's Nick Deaver scored to send the game to overtime.
Neither team found the back of the net in the first three-minute overtime session, but the Bears' Svetozar Stefanovic scored just 17 seconds into the second OT for an 8-7 Brown lead. But Navy battled back with just 27 seconds remaining in second extra frame with a goal from senior Archie Warren.
The tie didn't last long however, as Stefanovic scored what proved to be the winning goal just 12 seconds later to regain the lead for the Bears, 9-8. The Mids had a final desperation heave, but it missed the net as Brown held on for the win.
In the final match of his career, Navy senior Paul Pedrotty registered a game-high six goals. Navy senior goalkeeper Anthony Gutierrez recorded 16 saves.
Pedrotty gave Navy an early 1-0 lead in the first quarter and then fellow senior Jesse Walker
made it 2-0 early in the second. Stefanovic put Brown on the board later in the period, but Pedrotty notched his second goal of the game at 2:10, giving Navy a 3-1 lead at the break.
Pedrotty made it 4-1 on a penalty shot early in the third quarter, but Brown later scored with the man advantage to cut its deficit in half. The two teams traded goals before the third quarter ended as the Mids carried a 5-3 lead into the fourth.
Another Pedrotty goal, this one on a penalty shot, early in the fourth quarter extended the Mids' lead to 6-3. Brown then rallied as Deaver scored a man-up goal at 6:34 before Stefanovic added another at 4:44 to pull the Bears within one at 6-5. Deaver and Pedrotty then traded goals, heading into the final minute of play.