Polo scores a win on last-second goal

The GW women’s water polo team (2-2) beat Bucknell University and host Villanova University in two close games Saturday, but were beaten badly by defending Eastern Conference champion Princeton University.

The thriller of the weekend came in GW’s 10-9 win over Bucknell, when freshman Vanessa Fravel scored with seven-tenths of a second remaining to defeat the Bison. The goal came after GW tied the score at 9-9 with a minute remaining.

“We stuck through it,” GW coach Scott Reed said. “It was a nice win for them.”

Heather Walenga scored two of GW’s five first-quarter goals. By halftime, it was 5-4 in favor of GW, but by the end of the third, Bucknell regained the lead, 8-7.

GW was playing Bucknell for the second time this season. The Bison beat GW 8-7 in the first week of the season at the Smith Center.

The Colonials beat Villanova 13-9 in their first match Saturday morning with a late surge behind Andrea Philpot’s two late goals.

After breaking out to a 2-1 lead, GW coach Scott Reed was forced to remove three starting players for foul trouble, and the Wildcats clawed back. The teams reached halftime tied 5-5. GW played much of the contest without Mia Fabian, Vanessa Fravel and Kira Canon. In the third period, GW held a slim 8-7 lead and when Reed inserted them back into the lineup, the Colonials scored five goals and went on to victory.

In the day’s second match, GW lost to a Princeton team that lost only one player to graduation. The Colonials scored three goals in the first period, but were held scoreless for the remainder of the game.

Reed said he knew facing the veteran Princeton squad would be tough, but he said he did not expect a 16-4 beating.

“That was a tough game to overcome,” Reed said. “That was the first time we played a team of that caliber.”

Reed stressed the importance of the team’s balanced scoring. While GW holds an even record, Reed said he is impressed by his relatively young squad. The coach said he anticipates an even better team with the addition of Nell Friar, Kristen Fagley and Ashley Pyka. The three missed games as they competed with GW swimming and diving team at the Atlantic 10 Championships.

The Colonials will travel to Providence, R.I., for the Brown Invitational next weekend.

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