Bulldog Women's Water Polo Splits Games on the Road at Convergence Tournament

Photo credit: Rachel Roche
Photo credit: Rachel Roche

The University of Redlands women's water polo team split a pair of games at the Convergence Tournament in Claremont on Saturday. In a Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) dual against Pomona-Pitzer Colleges, the Bulldogs fell by a score of 7-12. During a bounce-back game against Penn State Behrend, the Maroon and Gray cruised to a 15-1 victory.

In the day's opener against the Sagehens, the Bulldogs went down two goals before junior attacker Hunter Olivier (Indio, CA) scored with 1:46 left in the first to make it 1-2.

Although Olivier connected once again late into the second, Pomona-Pitzer gained a 5-2 lead before halftime.

After back-and-forth action early in the third, the Sagehens owned a four-goal lead at 8-4. Senior attacker Katelyn Jenkins (Bellevue, WA) and Olivier scored consecutive goals to cut the Bulldogs' deficit down to 6-8 heading into the fourth. Olivier scored one more goal with 2:55 left on the clock, but the Sagehens still held on for a 12-7 win.

Nonetheless, the Bulldogs regrouped in their second opportunity of the day and jumped out to a fast start against the Lions of PSU-Behrend. Senior center Kolby Kahahawai (Kailua, HI) scored quickly on a power-play just 28 seconds into the game. Less than a minute later, she assisted senior attacker Sami Walker (Taylorsville, UT) on her goal to put Redlands in front by a score of 2-0.

The Bulldogs gained goals from five different players, including two from sophomore attacker Kayla Takakura (Wailuku, HI), to help end the first quarter with an 8-0 lead.

Although the Lions stepped up their defense in the second quarter, Kahahawai reached the back of the net on a goal at the 2:03-mark to push the lead to 9-0. First-year attacker Nicolette Ramirez (Whittier, CA) tacked on another goal less than a minute later to head into the break with a comfortable, 10-0 advantage.

By the start of the fourth frame, Redlands owned a 13-1 lead while utilizing most of its depth with success and consistency. After a pair of scores in the final quarter, the Bulldogs headed home with a resounding 15-1 victory.

Takakura led the game in scoring with three goals and an assist to go along with two steals. Ramirez paced the pool with four steals to contribute to a 15-1 steal margin for the Maroon and Gray. In net, senior goalkeeper Kelly Grosswendt (Newbury Park, CA) earned the win with seven saves.

Redlands (7-9, 1-1 SCIAC) prepares for another doubleheader on Saturday, March 9, beginning with Chapman University at 11 a.m. and concluding with Santa Clara University at 3 p.m. Both games take place in the Bulldogs' home facility of the Thompson Aquatic Center.