Water Polo 3-peats as CWPA Champions, heading to NCAA Tournament

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on April 29th, 2018 at 5:53 PM

The always dominant Michigan Water Polo team suffered their first CWPA conference loss in 3 years a few weeks ago to #15 Princeton, 8-7 in 3OT. It was shocking considering Michigan thumped them a month prior in a non-conference game, 13-4.

The loss cost Michigan (7-1) their CWPA Regular Season Championship, with Princeton going undefeated in league play and taking the tournament's #1 seed.

The CWPA is a one-bid league however, so the regular season crown means very little and the tournament winner is considered the champion.

2 seed and #10 ranked Michigan entered Lewisburg, PA on a mission on Friday: revenge.

They plunked 7 seed Brown, 16-4 in the Quarterfinals on Friday and followed it up with a 9-5 win over rival 3 seed Hartwick yesterday in the Semis. Princeton got past Indiana in OT yesterday setting up the inevitable rematch between 2 Michigan and 1 Princeton. Oddly enough both teams are ranked #10 in the poll, tied.

Winner-take-all today with an NCAA bid on the line. And thankfully we saw the Michigan team that killed Princeton in March.

The Wolverines literally wasted no time, scoring 31 seconds on a Maddy Steere PP goal to go up 1-0.

Michigan got out to a 6-1 lead in the 1st period with goals by Caroline Anderson (x2), Julia Sellers, Christina O'Beck and freshman Brittany Prentice.

Both teams closed the first half with two goals apiece, Kim Johnson scoring both of Michigan's to make it a 8-3 lead going into the locker room. Princeton came out in the second half and put up a fight.

After a Princeton goal and another Kim Johnson goal made it 9-4 Michigan, Princeton went on a 3-0 run to cut Michigan's lead to 9-7 at the end of 3 periods. 

In the 4th, it was Kim Johnson scoring her 4th of the game to make it 10-7 and then Brittany Prentice scoring a PP goal after a Princeton goal to make it 11-8. 

Michigan held on for the 11-8 win, beating 1 Princeton and winning their 8th CWPA Tournament Championship in program history and 3rd straight.

Michigan gets the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament in Los Angeles in two weeks and will head west with a 32-8 record. 

Comments

tlo2485

April 29th, 2018 at 6:05 PM ^

I knew I read this, so I looked it up. Their OT loss to Princeton in the regular season was Michigan's 5th game in a 30-hour span. They went 25-1 to finish the season, including that loss. I think they could make a little noise in the NCAA tournament and knock off one of the west coast teams for a shot at 5th or so.

Geez, I just looked up the NCAA history. Stanford UCLA, and USC have been either the champion or runner-up in every single tournament since 2001 except for a 1 runner-up finish by Cal and 1 by Loyola-Marymount over that span. Michigan tied for 5th last year and placed 4th the year before-- I did not know they have been performing that well. Impressive considering it is so dominated by the west coast.

BluCoast

April 29th, 2018 at 11:10 PM ^

CAL Golden Bears have won 3 NCAA Championships and have 1 runner-up in the past 10 years. This, of course, after a decade spanning 80s-90s where they won 7 of 10 NCAA Championships.

If you’re gonna speak with authority...tell the TRUTH!

#GoBears