GW Men's Water Polo Opens League Play at Home This Weekend

Senior goalkeeper Connor Dillon

   

Sept. 24, 2015

GW vs. #17 Johns Hopkins -- Friday, 7:30 p.m. | Watch on RaiseHigh Live
GW vs. #15 Bucknell -- Saturday, 11 a.m. | Watch on RaiseHigh Live
GW vs. #11 Princeton -- Sunday, 12 p.m. | Watch on RaiseHigh Live

WASHINGTON -- The George Washington men's water polo team opens CWPA Southern Division play this weekend with its first three home games of the season at the Charles E. Smith Center Pool against a trio of nationally-ranked opponents. The Colonials will host No. 17 Johns Hopkins on Friday at 7:30 p.m. before facing No. 15 Bucknell on Saturday at 11 a.m. GW concludes Alumni Weekend on Sunday at 12 p.m. against No. 11 Princeton.

GW (2-6) has not played since the Bison Invitational Sept. 12-13, posting a 1-3 showing at the tournament with an 11-8 victory over Mercyhurst and losses to Washington and Jefferson, Johns Hopkins and Fordham. Sophomore Pierce Deamer led the Colonials with 13 goals, eight assists and eight ejections drawn in the four games, notching three hat tricks on the weekend.

Deamer paces GW with 21 goals, 13 assists and 34 points and ranks second with 12 ejections drawn through eight games this season. Freshman James McLean is second on the team with 15 goals and 17 points. Rookie Jack Kerwin has posted a team-best 14 steals and six field blocks to go with 14 points (6g, 8a), while classmate Brett Else is second with 13 steals while leading the team with 16 ejections drawn. Nearly 91 percent of GW's 76 goals this season have been scored by either freshmen or sophomores.

Four goalkeepers have seen time in the cage this season, with senior Connor Dillon seeing the majority of the minutes and recording 44 saves.

Ranked 17th in the nation, Johns Hopkins (6-1) went 3-1 at the Bison Invite with wins over Washington & Jefferson, GW and Mercyhurst while suffering its only loss of the season at the hands of No. 13 Brown. Giorgio Cico has been named CWPA Southern Division Rookie of the Week for both weeks of competition. He leads the Blue Jays in goals (19) and points (35) while ranking second in assists (16) and third in steals (13). Hopkins has outscored its opponents, 111-57, this season.

The Blue Jays defeated the Colonials, 16-8, at the Bison Invite. Deamer and Else each scored twice to pace the Colonials, and Dillon (3) and junior Sander Profaci (8) combined for 11 saves. Cico, Blake Range and Matt Fraser each notched hat tricks for Johns Hopkins.

The Colonials and Blue Jays have met at least three times in eight consecutive seasons, and the rivals are prone to close contests, as six of the last nine games have resulted in final margins of two goals or less. Deamer has scored nine goals in four career games against Johns Hopkins, and Dillon has totaled 54 saves in five contests against the Blue Jays.

Bucknell (6-2) won all four games at their own Bison Invite, defeating No. 13 Brown, Penn State Behrend, Fordham and Washington & Jefferson. Two-time All-American and reigning CWPA Southern Division Player of the Week Stefan Aleksic leads 15th-ranked Bucknell with 18 goals and 28 points this season, and he ranks second on the team with 11 steals. Charlie Niehaus has seen the majority of time in goal and boasts a .463 save percentage.

The Bison defeated the Colonials three times last season, with Deamer scoring six goals over the three games. Dillon has recorded 31 saves in four career games against Bucknell, while Profaci has stopped 18 shots in three games against the Bison.

No. 11 Princeton (7-3) is coming off a 10th-place showing at the NorCal Tournament last weekend at Stanford after splitting its four games against UC-Irvine (L), Redlands (W), UC-San Diego (W) and UC-Davis (L). The Tigers' three losses on the season have all come at the hands of top-10 opponents. Thomas Nelson paces Princeton with 23 goals, 31 points and 12 ejections drawn on the year, while Jordan Colina ranks second with 19 goals to go with a team-best 15 steals. Vojislav Mitrovic has played the majority of Princeton's minutes in goal and boasts a .576 save percentage with 95 saves against 70 goals allowed. The Tigers have outscored their opponents, 129-84, on the year.

Princeton defeated GW twice last season, but the Colonials were within one of the eighth-ranked Tigers in the fourth quarter before falling, 14-12, at the Smith Center. Deamer scored five goals in the two games, and Dillon has recorded 30 saves in four career contests against Princeton.

 

 

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