NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Connecticut College men's water polo team competed against four schools during a two-day tournament which it hosted at Lott Natatorium over the weekend. The young squad, which consists of five freshmen on its 12-player roster, dropped games against Penn State Behrend, Gannon, Cal Lutheran and Iona.
Penn State Behrend 12, Connecticut College 10
The Camels were the most competitive in their opening match against the Nittany Lions and were either leading or tied for nearly the entire match. Junior Rahul Gill (Bethesda, Md.) broke a 1-1 tie before classmate Arturo Freitas (Weston, Fla.) recorded back-to-back goals to give the hosts a 4-1 cushion to work with at the 3:23 mark of the opening quarter. Gill completed a hat trick shortly before the end of the second quarter, and the Camels led 8-5 at the break.
Penn State Behrend then regrouped fought back in the second half. After the third quarter was controlled by the defenses, the Nittany Lions made their move in the fourth and tied the game up at 9-9 with 5:52 remaining in the game. Junior Sean King (La Canada, Calif.) put Connecticut College back ahead just 20 seconds later at 5:32, but the visitors needed just 11 seconds to tie the match up again at 10s.
Collin Holmes then completed the comeback for the Nittany Lions by netting two straight goals, and the Camels were unable to answer while having to settle for the two-goal defeat.
Gannon 20, Connecticut College 8
Gannon, which went undefeated over the weekend, cruised to a 7-0 advantage and led from wire-to-wire in the Camels' second game of the weekend tournament. Freshman Lucas Verrilli (Evanston, Ill.) put the hosts on the board in the last minute of the first quarter, but Gannon had another offensive outburst and led by twin figures at 13-3 heading into the break. The Golden Knights never let the Camels come any closer en route to the convincing 12-goal win.
California Lutheran 20, Connecticut College 7
In Connecticut College's third game of the day, California Lutheran jumped out to an 8-1 advantage and never looked back. Trailing 10-2 at halftime, the Camels managed to score three goals in the third with two coming from King and another courtesy of Verrilli. However, the early deficit would prove to be too much for the Camels to overcome, and the Kingsmen ran away with a convincing win.
Iona 16, Connecticut College 9
The Camels, who were playing their first game on Sunday, tried to take advantage of the fact that they were competing against a fatigued Iona squad which had just wrapped up competing in an overtime match against Gannon.
The teams exploded for nine goals offensively in the first quarter and Connecticut College had a 5-4 lead through eight minutes of action thanks to getting all five markers from Gill, which was capped by a last-second strike. The Camels also stayed close with the Division I program and only trailed by a 7-6 score at halftime, but the Gaels eventually caught fire and used an 8-0 run to pull away.
Connecticut College (0-6) will next trek to the Pittsburgh area to compete against Washington & Jefferson on Saturday, Sept. 22 at 10 a.m.