Women's Water Polo Falls to No. 7 Michigan in Eastern Championship Opener

Women's Water Polo Falls to No. 7 Michigan in Eastern Championship Opener

Pictured: Aisha Price
Photo courtesy: Gil Talbot Photography

COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The Harvard women's water polo team suffered an 18-10 loss to No. 7 Michigan, the top-seeded squad, in the first match of the Eastern Championship. The Crimson, the No. 8 seed in the field, will now play the loser of the Bucknell/Princeton matchup, Saturday at 1:30 p.m.

Harvard put the pressure on the Wolverines early as Shannon Purcell scored on a man-up opportunity after 55 seconds on action. Michigan responded with two goals less than two minutes apart. Aisha Price knotted the score at 2-2 with a rising shot from the left wing. Ita Barton-Kettleborough gave the Crimson the lead with 2:23 remaining in the opening stanza with a skip shot. The Wolverines tallied an equalizer before the first intermission. In the second period, Michigan potted nine goals and limited Harvard to just three scores as the Wolverines owned a 12-6 lead at halftime. Michigan kept the pressure on by adding three goals in the third quarter. The Crimson managed to find the back of the net once in the period. In the fourth stanza, Harvard and Michigan each notched three scores.

Barton-Kettleborough paced the Crimson with a hat trick while Price and Shannon Purcell each buried two markers. Devan Kennifer, Elise Molnar and Monica Zdrojewski all tallied a goal in the contest. Between the pipes Laurel McCarthy registered six saves.