GW Men's Water Polo Heads to Bison Invitational This Weekend
Colonials to Face Four CWPA Opponents at Two-Day Tournament
Sept. 10, 2015
GW vs. Washington & Jefferson -- Saturday, Sept. 12, 11:30 a.m.
GW vs. Mercyhurst -- Saturday, Sept. 12, 5:45 p.m.
GW vs. #18 Johns Hopkins -- Sunday, Sept. 13, 11:45 a.m.
GW vs. Fordham -- Sunday, Sept. 13, 4:45 p.m.<
WASHINGTON -- For the second year in a row, the George Washington men's water polo team will compete at the Bison Invitational hosted by Bucknell University this weekend in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. The Colonials will square off with four Collegiate Water Polo Association foes -- Washington & Jefferson (Saturday, 11:30 a.m.), Mercyhurst (Saturday, 5:45 p.m.), No. 18 Johns Hopkins (Sunday, 11:45 a.m.) and Fordham (Sunday, 4:45 p.m.) -- in non-conference action during the two-day tournament. All games will be played at Bucknell's Kinney Natatorium.
GW went a perfect 4-0 at the 2014 Bison Invite with wins over Fordham (8-7), Salem International (20-5), Penn State Behrend (16-2) and Mercyhurst (15-6) as part of a 6-1 start that propelled the Colonials into the national rankings.
GW went 1-3 at the season-opening Bruno Classic in Providence, Rhode Island, last weekend, including an 8-3 win over Occidental and losses to a pair of ranked opponents in No. 11 Brown, the defending CWPA champions and the tournament's host, and No. 17 St. Francis Brooklyn, which won back-to-back CWPA titles in 2012 and 2013.
Freshman goalkeeper Matt Taylor was named CWPA Southern Division Defensive Player of the Week on Wednesday. The rookie totaled 31 saves against just 11 goals allowed in two games last weekend, posting a .738 save percentage and a 5.50 goals-against average.
Sophomore Pierce Deamer paced the Colonials' offense with eight goals and five assists. Sophomore Duke Becker and freshman James McLean each scored six goals on the weekend, while freshman Brett Else tallied five goals, five steals and 11 ejections drawn while winning 11 sprints. Thirty of GW's 34 goals at the Bruno Classic were scored by either freshmen or sophomores.
Washington & Jefferson will open its season this weekend at the Bison Invite. The Presidents are coming off a 14-17 season in which they placed sixth in the Southern Division and 12th at the CWPA Championship. Patrick Fredrick is W&J's top returning scorer after tallying 53 goals and a team-high 66 assists in 2014. Nicholas Willison also reached the 50-goal plateau a year ago.
GW has not faced Washington & Jefferson in the regular season since the 2011 CWPA North/South Tournament. However, the Colonials and Presidents have faced off in four straight Southern Division Championships, including the 2014 fifth-place game, which GW won, 15-6. Becker notched a hat trick in that game, while goalie Connor Dillon recorded 12 saves. Now a senior, Dillon has stopped 26 shots in three career games against the Presidents, and GW has won eight straight games over W&J dating to 2005.
Mercyhurst will also open its season at the Bison Invitational this weekend. The Lakers posted a 15-13 record last season and placed eighth at the Southern Division Championship. Senior Dave Matulis, a Division II All-American, is Mercyhurst's top returning scorer after netting a team-best 47 goals to go with a team-high 32 ejections drawn in 2014.
GW downed Mercyhurst, 15-6, at the 2014 Bison Invite behind Dillon's 14 saves. He has totaled 32 stops in three career games against the Lakers.
Johns Hopkins swept three games at last weekend's season-opening Navy Open, defeating Iona (20-9), Cal Lutheran (19-5) and Fordham (12-8). Andreas Katsis scored a team-high eight goals, while Langdon Froomer -- an honorable mention All-American last season -- tallied six goals and eight assists for a team-best 14 points. In addition, freshman Giorgio Cico recorded six goals and six assists to earn CWPA Southern Division Rookie of the Week accolades.
The Colonials and Blue Jays met three times last season, with Hopkins winning twice. GW defeated its Southern Division rival, 13-11, in Baltimore on Oct. 22 behind a hat trick by Deamer, who totaled seven goals in three games against Hopkins last season. In addition, Dillon has recorded 51 saves in four career games against the Blue Jays. GW and Hopkins are extremely familiar with each other, having met at least three times in eight consecutive seasons, and the rivals are prone to close games, as six of the last eight contests have resulted in final margins of two goals or less.
Fordham split four games at the Navy Open to start the season, defeating Gannon (14-8) and Salem International (21-10) and falling to No. 15 Navy (9-6) and Johns Hopkins (12-8). Senior Patrick Lenihan paced the Rams with six goals on the weekend, while junior R.J. Simmons and freshman Diego Delgado each scored five.
GW has won three straight over Fordham and five of the last six meetings since 2011, including a pair of victories last season -- 8-7 at the Bison Invite and 11-8 in the first game of the CWPA Championship.
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