Redlands Women's Water Polo Finishes Strong at the Macalester Invite

Photo credit: Nick Burchett
Photo credit: Nick Burchett

The University of Redlands women's water polo team concluded its successful trip to Minnesota with split results on Sunday during the Macalester Invite.  The Bulldogs battled to force overtime but suffered a tough loss to the Virginia Military Institute before rolling to their second victory over Carthage College (WI) in as many days.

Against VMI, Redlands trailed by two with 4:03 left in regulation but took advantage of a power-play about 30 seconds later to cut the deficit in half.  Senior attacker Katelyn Jenkins (Bellevue, WA) fired one past the goalkeeper for her third goal of the game to make it 12-13. 

After the Bulldogs defended the Keydets' subsequent 6-on-5, they gained the tying goal off the hands of first-year attacker Holly Kvanvig (Beaverton, OR) with 17 seconds to go.  Senior goalkeeper Kelly Grosswendt (Newbury Park, CA) and the Bulldogs prevented any last-second heroics on VMI's final possession.

Now headed to overtime, the teams each converted two goals to keep the score even.  Junior attacker Hunter Olivier (Indio, CA) and Jenkins each found the back of the net to counter VMI's netters. 

However, the sudden-victory period saw the Keydets score the game-winning goal with 50 seconds remaining for the 16-15 final.

Jenkins and Olivier each provided four goals.  First-year attacker Nicolette Ramirez (Whittier, CA), Kvanvig, and senior center Kolby Kahahawai (Kailua, HI) each scored twice, while senior attacker Sami Walker (Taylorsville, UT) added one.

Grosswendt made 16 saves in the loss.

Redlands returned to action later in the afternoon and faced Carthage for the second time during the tournament.  The Bulldogs cruised to a 19-2 victory with a well-balanced attack that included at least one goal from 10 student-athletes.  Among the highlights, Ramirez and Kahahawai each registered a hat trick.  In addition, sophomore defender Jena Suzuki (Wailuku, HI) and sophomore attacker Katelynn Holloman (Wildomar, CA) fired off two goals, while sophomore defender Sarah Draves (Fallbrook, CA) added one. Defensively, Grosswendt remained a steady stalwart between the posts with 13 saves.

Redlands (4-7) hosts the University of La Verne in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) opener on Wednesday, February 27, at 7 p.m.