The GW women’s water polo team dropped two if its three matches this past weekend, each of which were against league opponents.
The Colonials opened the weekend with an 18-7 victory over Salem International Saturday at the Smith Center. Senior captain Taraneh Bastani paced GW with three goals, while sophomores Morgan Hooker and Alessia Dinkel, and freshmen Theresa Lamontagne and Greta Pedraza recorded two goals apiece. Sophomore goal keeper Kaitlin Buttler-Ricketts made six saves.
Later in the day, the Colonials took on No. 15 Princeton.
“When we played Princeton, the team came together in a way I have never seen it before,” said Hooker. “As a team, we were communicating and anticipating each others moves. We came out there pumped knowing we would give it our all and had nothing to lose.”
Though GW lost 12-10, the squad played impressively against their nationally-ranked opponent. With the match tied after three periods, Princeton was simply too tough down the stretch, outscoring the home team 4-2 in the final period.
Hooker led the Colonials with three goals, while senior Kendra Shanley and sophomore Jenna Burnett added two goals each.
“All of our hard work has finally paid off, and we can move forward from this experience,” added Hooker.
On Sunday, GW dropped a tough 9-8 decision to Bucknell. With the game tied, the Bison scored the winning goal with just over a minute remaining.
“When we played Bucknell, we were confident and worked hard not to let them counter us,” Hooker said. “The outside offense moved the ball around amazingly well, which opened up great shooting opportunities at set for me.”
“(Princeton and Bucknell) are usually our toughest opponents, and our team took a big step forward this weekend keeping the games extremely close,” Pedraza said. “I think we gave the teams a little scare and showed them that we aren’t what we used to be and we will continue to grow.”
The team will be in action in the first round of the College Water Polo Association Southern Division Championship against Bucknell next Saturday at 11 a.m. in Lewisburg, Pa.