CLAREMONT, Calif. – The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's water polo team opened the 2017 Gary Troyer Tournament on Friday by splitting a pair of matches in Axelrood pool. In the afternoon, the Stags took down Connecticut College 17-10 before falling in overtime against Johns Hopkins 14-13. Noah Deer (CMC) scored 12 goals on the day, including nine against Johns Hopkins in the night cap.
CMS defeats Connecticut College 17-10
The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps men's water polo got off to a strong start at the Gary Troyer Tournament, earning a hard-fought 17-10 victory over Connecticut College on Friday afternoon. The two teams were fairly close in the first half of the match, but the Stags came out sharper in the second half and pulled away for their seventh win of the season.
Zack Rossman (CMC) scored a season-high five goals during the match, all of which came in even strength, while Charlie Thomson (CMC) added three. First year Barron Banta (CMC) led the team with two steals and goalkeeper Evan Pauletich (CMC) recorded eight saves and a steal. On the other side, the Camels saw three players score three goals each, including Stephan Cress, Arturo Freitas, and Sean King.
The Camels opened up a scoring just 50 seconds into the match thanks to Sean King, but with 5:52 left in the first period, Noah Deer tied the game and sparked the Stags on a huge 5-0 run. CJ Box (CMC) fired a laser from beyond five meters into the lower right corner of the net to give CMS a 2-1 lead and later Koss Klobucher (CMC) found Rossman near the net to extend the lead 5-1. The Stags defense did a great job marking their men and forcing the Camels into tough shots while Peter Tilton (CMC), Box and Rossman did a great job moving the ball.
Charlie Thomson (CMC) scored the opening goal of the second period to make it 6-1, but the Camels finally woke up on the offensive end and netted two to cut the lead in half. Rossman stopped the run with a goal with 5:21 remaining in the half to extend the lead 7-3. The two teams began traded shots, but with a minute and half remaining, Freitas and Cress scored back-to-back goals for the Camels to cut the deficit 10-7.
After the half, the Stags were determined to not let the Camels back in the game. CMS did an excellent job moving the ball and finding open looks in front of the net. Rossman sparked the Stags on a 3-0 run with 6:10 remaining in the third period, scoring twice during the run. After Cress ended the Stags' scoring run with a goal with 4:01 left, Thomson answered back with less than two minutes remaining to extend the lead 14-8. However, the Camels scored twice in the final minute and half to cut the deficit 14-10.
CMS showed superior depth in the final period, holding the tired Camels scoreless while Deer scored off an assist from Tilton with 4:06 left to put the game out of reach. Box and Thomson found the net in the final minutes to end the game 17-10.
Johns Hopkins defeats CMS 14-13 (OT)
The final match of the night featured the Stags hosting the Johns Hopkins Blue Jays under the lights in Axelrood Pool. Despite a career performance from Noah Deer, who finished with nine goal, the Blue Jays edged the Stags by a 14-13 final in overtime.
The Stags controlled the first-half and held a 6-3 lead at the break, but a six-goal third period from the Blue Jays pushed Johns Hopkins in front heading into the fourth quarter by a 9-8 margin. The Stags battled back and won the fourth period, including the final two goals in regulation by Deer to force overtime.
Deer scored his eighth and ninth goals of the night in the final three minutes of regulation to tie the match at 12-12. Evan Pauletich then made a clutch save with just seconds left in the fourth period to keep the score level heading to overtime.
The two overtime periods would be defined by defense. In six minutes of extra time only three goals were scored. It looked as if the first overtime period would end without a goal, but Johns Hopkins' Giorgio Cico floated a shot over the outreached arms of Pauletich as the horn sounded to give the Blue Jays a 13-12 advantage.
With 1:03 remaining in the second overtime period, Banta tied the score with an unassisted tally for the Stags. Just 11 seconds later the Blue Jays took the lead right back with a goal from Finn Banks with 52 seconds remaining in the period.
Despite a pair of attempts in the waning seconds, the Stags were unable to find the back of the net and Johns Hopkins held on for the dramatic 14-13 victory.
The Gary Troyer Tournament continues tomorrow with the action getting underway at 8:00 a.m. in Axelrood Pool. The Stags with square off against Air Force at 11:45 a.m. and finish the day against Concordia at 7:15 p.m.