It may have been Junior Parents Weekend for Harvard, but the Harvard women’s water polo team also found extra fan support from the many visiting freshman, sophomore, and senior parents who also came to support the team this weekend as it hosted the Harvard Invitational at Blodgett Pool.
But despite the extra support, the Crimson went 1-3 on the weekend, falling one by one point to No. 18 Princeton and Iona.
Harvard (8-5) faced two ranked opponents, No. 12 San Jose State and the Tigers, in the first two games of the tournament, in addition to Bucknell and Iona later on.
“We definitely put it all out there this weekend,” said sophomore attacker Shayna Price, who is also a Crimson sports comper. “It was tough playing four games in one weekend, and I think we took each game for what it was worth. I think even though it’s hard to lose games, we did pretty well.”
IONA 11, HARVARD 10
In its final contest of the tournament, the Crimson lost, 11-10, in sudden-death overtime to the Gaels (6-4).
The match started off slow, as both teams were unable to take advantage of numerous scoring opportunities.
Eventually, Harvard established a 3-1 lead with goals from Shayna Price, co-captain Devan Kennifer, and junior two-meter defender Elise Molnar.
Although the Crimson maintained a narrow lead for most of the match, the Gaels were able to capitalize on several offensive opportunities to keep the score close. Iona eventually tied the game, 9-9, with 33 seconds left in the fourth quarter to send the match into overtime.
In the first overtime period, with four defenders draped over her, junior attacker Aisha Price flipped a backhanded shot into goal, putting Harvard up 10-9. The Crimson scored again in the frame to take the two-goal edge.
In the second overtime, the Gaels responded with two scores of their own, finding the back of the net with 12 seconds remaining in the period to make it 11-11 and send the game into sudden-death.
In the ensuing frame, Iona was able to net a goal attempt with the shot clock winding down to top Harvard, 12-11.
“The positive thing is we can learn a lot,” Aisha Price said. “[Harvard coach Ted Minnis] always says you have to lose big games to win them.”
This was the third match between the two squads this season and all have been decided by one goal. The Gaels lead the season series, 2-1.
HARVARD 13, BUCKNELL 8