April 28, 2012
POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. - The Villanova women's water polo team was upended by the Gaels of Iona this afternoon in the first semifinal game of the day at MAAC Championships in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
The strong play of Iona's offensive attack early on helped to secure a six-goal lead after the first quarter. Villanova would not be able to register a tally on the score sheet as the defense from Iona successfully cut-off the potential for scoring opportunities.
In the second quarter, Villanova posted a goal to their credit from junior Julia Penkal, although another five goals from the Gaels increased the margin to ten at the end of the first half. The score favored Iona by a count of 11-1.
Junior Hannah Ishida, recent All-MAAC First-Team selection, notched a goal midway through the third after a quick score from Iona started it off. The game changed to a slower pace in the third, as there would only be one more goal netted in the quarter, which was delivered by the Gaels.
Three tallies recorded by Villanova in the first two minutes and 45 seconds of the fourth quarter decreased the deficit to eight. The Wildcats earned their first goal in the period off a successful shot by senior Elizabeth Clarke. A long heave from freshman Callan Edwards and a quick fire by junior Lauren Peachey accounted for the second and third scores.
The final sixth tally for the `Cats in the contest was scored by junior Julia Penkal in the fourth. Penkal led the team in scoring on the afternoon with two goals.
Iona would counterattack the attempted comeback from Villanova with two goals of their own to solidify the victory. The final score was booked 15-6 in favor of the Gaels.
Registering multiple steals in the match were Julia Penkal (3), Lauren Peachey (3) and Elizabeth Clarke (2). Callan Edwards earned two points with one goal and one assist while Maddi Moore saved five shots in net.
Villanova will face the Red Foxes of Marist in the consolation game tomorrow at noon. Third-seed Wagner College earned a 5-4 victory over second-seeded Marist College in the second semifinal today.
The Seahawks of Wagner will contest No. 20 Iona tomorrow at 2 p.m. in the MAAC Championship match.