March 15, 2014
Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Canham Natatorium)
Event: Wolverine Invitational (Day 1)
Results: #18 Michigan 13, Gannon 5; #18 Michigan 14, Notre Dame College 2; #18 Michigan 7, Pacific 6 (OT)
Records: U-M (13-10), Gannon (6-6), NDC (1-5), Pacific (7-11)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, March 16 -- vs. Siena - Wolverine Invitational (Canham Natatorium), 8 a.m.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The No. 18-ranked University of Michigan water polo team opened its home Wolverine Invitational with three wins, battling to a 7-6 overtime victory over Pacific after cruising past Gannon, 13-5, and Notre Dame College, 14-2, on Saturday (March 15) at Canham Natatorium. With the wins, U-M extended its win streak to 10 straight games.
Junior Elizabeth Williams (Carlsbad, Calif./Carlsbad HS) headlined the Wolverine offensive effort, scoring five goals on the day, including a hat trick in the nightcap against Pacific. Freshmen Jamie Nolan (San Jose, Calif./Leland HS) and Kimberly Graziano (Ann Arbor, Mich./Skyline HS) also recorded hat tricks against Gannon and Notre Dame, respectively. It was the first collegiate hat trick for both Wolverine rookies.
All three Michigan goalkeepers earned playing time, starting one game apiece. Freshman Emily Browning (Lake Forest, Calif./El Toro HS) appeared in all three games, posting 17 total saves, including 12 in a complete-game performance against the Tigers.
The Wolverines held onto narrow one-point advantage through most of the evening slate against Pacific as the teams combined for just five goals through the opening three quarters. The Tigers knotted up the score at 3-3 in the first minute of the fourth frame before the offense exploded in the few minutes of regulation.
Tiger goalkeeper stopped a pair of point-blank Michigan shots late in the frame, including a breakaway attempt, but U-M regained possession to lead to Williams's cross-cage goal from outside with 2:12 remaining. Pacific responded with a 6-on-5 goal just 33 seconds later. Williams scored on another outside shot with 19 seconds remaining in the fourth, but Pacific responded again, scoring a shot from two meters to tie up the game with four seconds on the clock.
The Wolverines surged ahead in overtime with two goals in the first three minutes. Sophomore Presley Pender (Costa Mesa, Calif./Newport Harbor HS) scored with an outside shot of her own less than 30 seconds into the frame, and Williams followed suit, completing her hat trick with an outside shot at the buzzer. The Tigers cut the deficit to one midway through the second three-minute frame, but could not add a second as senior Kelsey Nolan (San Jose, Calif./Leland HS) came up with a steal in front on their final possession.
Michigan rolled past its morning competition, kicking off the tournament with back-to-back lopsided wins over Gannon and Notre Dame College.
After a close first quarter, the Wolverines pulled away from Gannon with three unanswered goals in the second, including a pair from Pender and senior Hathaway Moore (Atherton, Calif./Saint Francis HS) on consecutive attacks late in the frame. Gannon scored on another 6-on-5 opportunity -- its fourth power-play goal of the contest -- in the first minute of the third, but Michigan responded with four more unanswered goals in the quarter. Williams recorded a pair of one-touch goals within a narrow 39-second window early while Cozens netted her second of the game on a push shot late.
Gannon scored again in the first minute of the fourth quarter, but U-M widened its margin late in the frame as Jamie Nolan scored twice in the final minute, completing her first collegiate hat trick on a counter-attack breakaway with just 26 seconds remaining.
The Wolverines jumped out to sizable early lead against NDC, scoring four goals in the first quarter and six in the second before the Falcons netted their first late in the third quarter. Graziano, who also scored twice in the opener, posted two goals in the first and completed her first collegiate hat trick with shot from two meters late in the third. Sophomore Barbara Lanier (Lafayette, Calif./Acalanes HS) also tallied multiple goals, scoring twice in the second quarter on a backhand shot and a subsequent 6-on-5 opportunity.
NDC scored again early in the fourth quarter, but U-M responded with two more of their own, including sophomore Katie Allison's (Worthington, Ohio/Thomas Worthington HS) first marker of the season on a power-play chance midway through the final frame. In all, 11 different Wolverine players recorded a goal against Notre Dame.
Michigan will play Siena (8 a.m.) and Fresno Pacific (12:45 p.m.) on Sunday (March 16) to conclude play at its own invite.
U-M Goals: Jamie Nolan 3, Kaitlyn Cozens 2, Elizabeth Williams 2, Barbara Lanier, Emily Sejna, Presley Pender, Hathaway Moore, Ali Thomason, Kimberly Graziano
Saves: U-M 11 (Julia Campbell 9, Emily Browning 2), Gannon 4 (Emily Rodriguez)
Ejections: U-M 11, Gannon 8
|Notre Dame College||0||0||1||1||2|
U-M Goals: Kimberly Graziano 3, Barbara Lanier 2, Emily Sejna, Kaitlyn Cozens, Allison Skaggs, Kelsey Nolan, Kelly Martin, Hathaway Moore, Jamie Nolan, Katie Allison, Brittany Kirwan
Saves: U-M 13 (Hayden Green 9, Kelsey Nolan 1, Emily Browning 3), NDC 3 (Julie Vanderpool)
Ejections: U-M 2, NDC 6
U-M Goals: Elizabeth Williams 3, Presley Pender 2, Heidi Moreland, Jamie Nolan
Saves: U-M 12 (Emily Browning), Pacific (Meghan Nee)
Ejections: U-M 10, Pacific 4
N O T E S
Michigan improved to 39-4 all-time record at the annual Wolverine Invitational, dating back to the 2005 season.
Michigan's 10-game winning streak is its longest since similarly posting 10 consecutive wins last season.
Michigan improved to 2-1 in overtime games this season.
Junior Elizabeth Williams and freshmen Jamie Nolan and Kimberly Graziano all recorded their first hat tricks of the season in today's contests. Ten different Wolverine players own hat tricks this season.
Senior Kelsey Nolan played two minutes in goal in the third quarter vs. Notre Dame College. She registered one save and did not allow a goal.
Nolan saw her 12-game scoring streak halted in the opener against Gannon. She scored a goal against Notre Dame in the subsequent game . Nolan has scored at least one goal in all but four games this season.
Freshman Emily Browning posted her first double-digit save performance vs. Pacific.
Q U O T E S
Michigan Head Coach Matt Anderson
On tonight's win ... "It was good. We're moving in the right direction. We're still making some young mistakes, but the difference is a month ago we probably would have let that game slip away. So, that's a sign of development. Emily Browning is playing a lot better. [Allison] Skaggs is getting a lot of looks at two meters. Beth [Williams] really stepped up tonight. We're just playing better as a team. The execution wasn't high tonight, and the effort and enthusiasm were there."
On the message before overtime ... "I just told them that it's not rocket science in overtime. When you have a look, you need to take it, because you have limited possessions. Presley [Pender] had a look and took it, whereas earlier in the game she was giving it up. Same thing with Beth."
On goalkeeper Emily Browning ... "Her positioning was very good. She forced them into the shots that they weren't comfortable with. When she first got to college, she didn't understand the importance of positioning. Now she is starting to understand the movement in the goal cage that she needs to have to be successful. That's been really good."
U-M Junior Elizabeth Williams
On the energy throughout the fourth quarter and overtime ... "Everyone gets a little more hyped and passionate. I definitely feel the energy. Whoever it is -- on the bench or in the water -- who provides that energy and enthusiasm, it spreads throughout the team. That's probably one of the things I most like about this team -- everyone gets hyped and pushes each other. The energy level definitely went up in that last quarter."
On her three goals ... "Matt [Anderson] really emphasized moving the goalie laterally and just put the ball in the cage. So, I just went for it. Presley [Pender] did the same, put the ball high in the corner. Once we did a better job listening, we got results."
On earning a hard-fought, emotional wins ... "I think it was really good for us. We have Indiana coming up in a couple weeks, and that's going to be even more emotional than this game. We knew this game was going to be hard -- our hardest of the weekend -- and we really hyped it up. We came out and played them like we would another east coast team. It was emotional, but it was awesome."
Contact: Leah Howard (email@example.com)