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You know it's going to be an easy night in water polo when your opponent's toughest shot of the first half was a surprise Hail Mary toss from about 40 feet out from goal.
The Ohio State women's water polo team actually scored twice from that range in the first half against Harvard last night at Blodgett Pool in the opening round of Easterns, but it didn't really matter. The Crimson went on to trounce the Buckeyes, 17-8.
The Crimson got off to a quick start, scoring five unanswered goals to open the game. Freshmen Skylar Satenstein and Jen Gahan each contributed two goals apiece in the early barrage to put the Crimson out in front.
By the end of the second period, it was time to give the starters a rest and use the depth of the Crimson bench, which normally holds about 10 extra swimmers. Ohio State, on the other hand, had its starting seven in the water for the whole game, with few players on the bench.
Not helping the Buckeyes was its inability to play its non-collegiate players in the Eastern Championships. Even tougher, the Buckeyes arrived at Blodgett at 2 p.m. and had to sit around the stifling 80-degree facility until game time at 8 p.m.
"The fast break was working really well and it helped us jump out to that 7-2 lead at the end of the first quarter," Harvard Coach Chris Hafferty. "We played well on hole play, too, so that we were able to sub in. They held their own in there and they played well enough to keep even."
But Tri-Captain Gillian Salton wasn't as impressed.
"We didn't play the way we were supposed to tonight," Salton said. "But we're psyched for tomorrow and ready. There are a lot of people on this team who have been waiting a long time to go to nationals and this our chance."
Slippery Slope Rock
In other action, top-seed Slippery Rock thrashed MIT's collegiate squad, 20-0.
The other three games played last night ended in ties between Brown and Bucknell, 5-5, the Queens club team and MIT's club team, 4-4, as well as Slippery Rock's second game of the evening against the Toronto club team, 9-9. While these games stand as ties for the tournament records of the teams, any ties in tomorrow's games will be broken in overtime.
THE NOTEBOOK: The Crimson will face off against seventh seed Maryland at 11:30 a.m. and number two seed Michigan at 4:30 p.m. The championship game will be Sunday at 2 p.m.
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