NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The Iona College men's water polo team hosted a pair of CWPA Northern Division foes at the Hynes Center Pool and earned a split witih Connecticut College and No. 12 Brown Saturday. The Gaels took out the Camels 19-5 before falling to the Bears 11-7.
GAME 1: Iona 19, Conn College 5
Leading the entire game with 12 players scoring, Iona defeated Connecticut College 19-5 at Hynes Pool.
Evening their record to 1-1 in the Northern Division, Iona sophomore Marc Stauble led the Gaels with four goals, while sophomores Zach Roper and Patrick Judge added three goals apiece. Senior Rafael Romero, juniors Chris Ellis, Dan Fleck, Dom Mirt, and Matthew Rothman, sophomore Jay Pagano and freshmen Spencer Anthony, Alex Guerra, and Jason Hill added one goal each.
Junior goalie Anthony Zdanavicius recorded 13 saves in the win. The Gaels registered eight assisted goals, three by Romero. On defense, Iona made seven steals, two by freshman Bailey Lyons. The Gaels drew 16 Conn College kickouts, three each by Ellis, Fleck and Anthony. Ellis was disqualified with three ejections.
With 31 seconds gone in the match, Stauble’s first goal gave Iona the lead for good. Ellis, Stauble and Roper hit three straight Gael scores, until the Camels got on the board with 22 seconds left in the first to trim Iona’s lead to 4-1.
In the second period, Iona hit five straight goals by Roper (two), Stauble, and Judge to lead 9-1 at intermission. The Gaels outscored the visitors 4-2 in the third quarter on tallies by Stauble, Guerra, Judge and Fleck to lead 13-3 going into the final period. With head coach Brian Kelly playing his entire dressed squad, the Gaels topped the Camels 6-2 in the fourth quarter for the win.
GAME 2: Brown 11, Iona 7
Despite a valiant effort to upset No. 12 Brown, Iona fell 11-7 in the night cap.
Ellis led the Gaels (2-7, 1-2 CWPA North) with three goals, while Roper hit two. Judge and Alex Guerra had one score each. Senior goalie Matt McCrudden recorded two saves while Zdanavicius had five. On defense, the Gaels made five blocks and five steals, two by Stauble. Iona drew five Brown kickouts, two by Ellis.
With 2:13 gone in the match, Roper’s backhanded goal gave the Gaels their only lead, as the Bears answered with two consecutive scores to go ahead 2-1 as the first quarter ended. The Bears struck twice the opening two minutes of the second period for a 4-1 edge, until Roper and Judge found the back of the net to pull Iona with one 4-3 with 2:06 left. A buzzer-beating Brown goal put the visitors up 5-3 at intermission.
Holding the Gaels scoreless for most of the third period, the Bears hit three straight goals. But with 55 seconds left Ellis scored, then followed with his second goal with four ticks remaining to narrow the Brown lead to 8-5 as the final quarter began.
Brown went up 9-5 forty-six seconds into the fourth quarter, then Guerra answered with 6:39 left to narrow the gap to three 9-6. The Bears struck again 2:34 later, but Ellis capitalized on a 6-5 advantage to pull the Gaels within three 10-7 with 3:48 to go. The visitors scored 1:10 later, and despite a raucous crowd of Gael faithful, including many Iona water polo alumni, Iona’s upset hopes fell short.
Iona continues its four-match home weekend Sunday vs. MIT at 11:00 am and Harvard at 3:30 pm.