U-M to Host Wolverine Invite, Play Six Matches This Weekend

March 14, 2012

Five Good Meters | Poolside Preview with Matt Anderson

THIS WEEK (Wolverine Invitational Central)
Saturday, March 17
-- vs. Salem International (Canham Natatorium), 8 a.m.
Saturday, March 17 -- vs. Gannon (Canham Natatorium), 9:15 a.m.
Saturday, March 17 -- vs. Cal Lutheran (Canham Natatorium), 11:45 a.m.
Saturday, March 17 -- vs. Siena (Canham Natatorium), 7:15 p.m.
Sunday, March 18 -- vs. Concordia (Calif.) (Canham Natatorium), 8 a.m.
Sunday, March 18 -- vs. Mercyhurst (Canham Natatorium), 2:15 p.m.

The No. 13-ranked University of Michigan water polo team (9-9) will house its second event of the season when it plays host to seven teams for the Wolverine Invite. Competition is set to begin on Friday, March 16, inside Canham Natatorium.

The field of teams competing include: Siena, Salem International, Gannon, California Lutheran, Mercyhurst, Concordia-Irvine and Notre Dame (Ohio). Michigan holds a combined 47-0 record against the teams competing. The Wolverines will not face off against Notre Dame but will be meeting them in CWPA action next week.

Michigan will play its first of six games for the weekend on Saturday (March 17) against Salem International in a divisional match at 8 a.m. The Wolverines will stay in the pool for a 9:15 a.m. slated contest versus Gannon. Two more games will follow on the same day when the Maize and Blue play California Luthern at 11:45 a.m. followed by a showdown against Siena at 7:15 p.m.

On Sunday (March 16), U-M will open the last day of the invite vs. Concordia-Irvine (Calif.) at 8 a.m. and will close the competition against Mercyhurst with the contest slated for 2:15 p.m.

The Wolverines are coming off a 3-1 showing at the Red Fox Invitational hosted by Marist in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. last weekend (Sat-Sun., March 10-11). Michigan picked up wins against Iona (10-7), Brown (10-7) and a conference win in overtime against No. 16 Hartwick. Michigan's only loss was to Brown (7-5) on the first day of competition. Kiki Golden led U-M in scoring, managing 10 goals over the weekend to complement 13 steals and two field blocks.

• Salem International (0-7, 0-2)
   Series: Michigan leads, 3-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 19-4 (3/28/04 - Slippery, Pa.)
Michigan went on a four-goal run to make the score 8-2 at the half and continued to dominate SIU, outscoring its opponent 5-1 in the third quarter and 6-1 in the final period.

• Gannon (5-12)
   Series: Michigan leads, 17-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 15-4 (3/2/12 - Erie, Pa.)
Michigan used eight first-half goals to power over Gannon to start its 2012 conference play on the road. Kelsey Nolan tacked on a hat trick, with Lauren Colton and Lauren Dudley striking in two goals apiece. Eleven players notched at least a goal in the scorebook.

• California Lutheran (9-5)
   Series: Michigan leads, 8-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 11-4 (2/26/10 - Thousand Oaks, Calif.)
Taking on the host Regals, Michigan built two-goal leads after each of the first two periods, winding up 4-2 at the break. The Wolverines built a 10-3 lead by the end of the third period and the teams exchanged goals in the final stanza, with U-M scoring the last goal in the contest to cap the victory.

• Siena (3-11)
   Series: Michigan leads, 5-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 18-8 (3/12/11 - Ann Arbor, Mich.)
In day one of last year's Wolverine Invite, Lauren Dudley put a game-high four goals into the back of the cage and Laura Milstead turned in a hat trick to notch a win in against Siena as part of U-M's 20-game win streak.

• Concordia-Irvine (12-7)
   Series: Michigan leads, 1-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 12-6 (1/23/11 - Santa Barbara, Calif.)
The Wolverines got a boost from Sophie Høegh in the second quarter to the tune of two goals to carry an 8-4 lead into the break. The Wolverines remained in control in the second half, cruising to the victory in their first meeting against Concordia-Irvine.

• Mercyhurst (3-7)
   Series: Michigan leads, 13-0
   Last Meeting:
W, 16-2 (3/11/11 - Ann Arbor, Mich.)
The Wolverines took a 7-1 first-half lead on Mercyhurst on markers from seven different players. U-M's lead swelled thanks to a trio of points in the fourth from Natalie Naruns.

Michigan boasts a 26-4 record in the seven-year-old annual invitational. The Wolverine Invitational began in 2005 and has been played in March each season since. The Maize and Blue defeated Iona, Grove City, Marist, Maryland, and Siena at last year's tournament.

Michigan head coach Matt Anderson and Cal Lutheran's head coach, Craig Rond, were roommates during their collegiate years at San Jose State. Both have remained close friends during the careers as collegiate coaches.

The Wolverines faced 13 ranked opponents this season. On the year, Michigan is 3-9 when facing opponents in the national top 20. U-M picked up a win in its last encounter with a ranked team, defeating No. 16 Hartwick, 10-9, in overtime. The Wolverines captured a win over No. 16 Hawaii on Feb. 25, marking the first time this season U-M defeated a higher ranked team in the national poll. The last was on Jan. 22, 2011, when it handed No. 7 San Jose State a 9-7 loss during the Michigan Kick-Off.

Poll - Date (U-M Rank)
Preseason 2012 - Jan. 4 (16)
Week 1 - Jan. 25 (13)
Week 2 - Feb. 1 (12)
Week 3 - Feb. 8 (11)
Week 4 - Feb. 15 (12)
Week 5 - Feb. 22 (12)
Week 6 - Feb. 29 (9)

The Wolverines have won 10 consecutive CWPA division crowns overall and three of the last four CWPA Eastern Championship titles. The postseason divisional tournament returns on April 14-15 in Bloomington, Ind., after a one-year hiatus. During the break, Michigan was named the 2011 Western Division champion based on its regular-season record. Michigan had won the previous seven CWPA Western Division Tournament championships and a pair of Southern Division tournament crowns before that. Overall, U-M has not lost a regular-season league game since 2007 and is 73-3 in conference games all-time.

After last weekend, Michigan moved its hat trick count to 13 on the season. Kiki Golden, Kelsey Nolan and Lauren Thatcher each registered a three or more goals in a game during the Red Fox Invitational. U-M's 2012 season hat trick count includes: Golden (5), Lauren Colton (2), Nolan (2), Thatcher (2) Audrey Pratt (1) and Meagan Cobb (1).

Kiki Golden (Danville, Calif./Monte Vista) leads the Wolverines with 37 goals, scoring in 16-of-18 games on the year last. Golden led Michigan with 10 goals over the weekend during the Red Fox Invitational. Against Iona, she led all players with six goals.

Nolan tallied a hat trick and finished the weekend with six goals at the Marist College Red Fox Invitational in earning her second CWPA accolade this season and third of her career.

Lauren Thatcher (FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK, FEB. 28)
Kiki Golden (PLAYER OF THE WEEK, FEB. 7)
Elizabeth Williams (FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK, FEB. 7)

Kiki Golden (Danville, Calif./Monte Vista) and Lauren Colton (Mission Viejo, Calif./Tesoro) both reached 100 career goals during the UC Irvine Invitational, held Feb. 25-26. Both captured their 100th in the Wolverines match-up against Hawaii. After facing competition in the UC Irvine Invitational, Golden extends her count to 116, while Colton now posts 107.

COBB'S 150
Meagan Cobb (Hudsonville, Mich./Hudsonville) reached 150 career points after hitting the milestone when she registered one goal in the match-up against UCLA on Feb. 5. On the year, Cobb has 19 points from 12 goals and seven assists with 156 for her career.

Audrey Pratt (Burlingame, Calif./Burlingame) recorded her 50th career point during Michigan's 7-5 win over UC Davis on Feb. 2. To open season, Pratt registered her first career hat trick during the Michigan Kick-Off.

Morgan Turner needs one block to reach 300 for her career and three more steals for 50.
Alex Adamson is three wins shy of 50 for her career.
Hathaway Moore is two points shy of 50 for her career.

Wednesday, March 21, 7 p.m. -- at Notre Dame-Ohio (Euclid, Ohio)

Contact: Zena Lewis (734) 763-4423