No. 18 Women’s Water Polo Downed by No. 20 Bucknell, 11-7, in CWPA Championship Fifth-Place Game

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
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Harvard finished sixth at the CWPA Championship for the second-straight season (Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – In its final game of the season, the No. 18 Harvard women's water polo team fell short to No. 20 Bucknell, 11-7, in the fifth-place game of the CWPA Championship Sunday morning at Blodgett Pool.

Kristen Hong netted a hat trick to pace the Harvard (24-10, 3-4 CWPA) attack, while Charlotte Hendrix notched a pair to cap her senior season. Cleo Harrington posted her third double-digit save effort of the weekend with 13 saves in between the pipes.

Hong indented the scoreboard first, skipping a shot into the back of the net to give the Crimson the lead midway through the period, but Bucknell (17-15, 4-3 CWPA) responded on its next possession to tie the game at 1-1.

The Bison took their first lead of the day 25 seconds into the second stanza until Hollis Jomo answered on the Crimson's ensuing possession, but the Bison roped two-straight goals to hold the edge at 4-2. Hendrix put Harvard back within one, but Bucknell scored off a deflection in the waning seconds of the half to claim a 5-3 advantage.

Bucknell furthered its command to four goals until Hong pounded in back-to-back scores to cut the deficit back to two. The Bison retook their three-goal lead with less than a minute left in the third to hold the upper hand at 8-5 heading into the final period.

Hendrix quickly reduced the deficit back to two, netting a skip shot on a counter attack to open the final frame, but the Bison reeled off another 3-0 run to go up 11-6. Rachel Lobato snapped the back of the net with less than a minute to go, but Bucknell held on to claim fifth place.

Seniors Yoshi Andersen, Hendrix and Lobato wrapped up stellar careers as the senior class finished with the most wins in program history with 77, including a 19-11 record at Blodgett Pool.