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Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications

No. 20 Men's Water Polo Edged by No. 15 Bucknell, 7-6, in Eastern Semis

By: Princeton Athletic Communications
          Release: 11/17/2012
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In a very tight defensive battle where the lead transferred multiple times, it was No. 15 Bucknell to come out on top and edge past the No. 20 Princeton men's water polo team, 7-6, to advance to the Eastern Championship title game Saturday at DeNunzio Pool.

The Tigers' hopes for defending their Eastern crown ended with the loss and they will now face Mercyhurst in the third-place contest on Sunday, Nov. 18 at 1 p.m. Princeton fell to the Lakers in the semifinals at the Southern Championship two weeks ago.

Bucknell's Mike Kimble broke onto the board first with a goal at 3:21 in the opening quarter, but Tommy Donahue was there to even the score with a clean shot past the Bison goalie at 1:40.

The score did not remain knotted for long in the second quarter, as again Bucknell managed to retake the lead at 6:51. A fighting Tigers side responded with a Kayj Shannon score at 2:28. Princeton was unable to create a momentum pull, as the Bison's Jack Else scored a third go-ahead goal before halftime.

Down 3-2, Billy Tifft was the third Tiger to even the score 1:20 into the second half. His goal would ignite a scoring rally for Princeton, as Tim Wenzlau and Donahue followed suit. The Tigers' offensive three-goal rally put the home team up 5-3, but Princeton was unable to preserve its point cushion.

The Bison managed to even the score, 5-5, off a pair of goals with less than two minutes to play in the third quarter and retake the lead for the third time in the game near the midpoint of the fourth. In a 6-on-5 play, Brian Barron sent the ball into the cage at 4:46.

Again in a hole, Princeton had to find a way to score the equalizer. This time it was freshman Jamie Kuprenas who tied things up at 2:29. However, Bucknell was there to respond again less than a minute later to put them up 7-6.

Princeton had a final possession, in hopes of forcing overtime, but the Bison managed to shut down its final offensive drive.

Donahue led the offense with two goals on four attempts. Sam Butler tallied three steals, while Drew Hoffenberg and Tifft had a pair of steals apiece.

In goal, freshman Alex Gow made seven saves and dished an assist.

No. 20 Princeton: 1 - 1 - 3 - 2 - 6
No. 15 Bucknell: 1 - 2 - 2 - 1 - 7

Goals: Donahue 2, Kuprenas 1, Shannon 1, Tifft 1, Wenzlau 1
Assists: Gow 1, Kuprenas 1
Steals: Butler 3, Hoffenberg 2, Kuprenas 1, Ruth 1, Shannon 1, Tifft 1, Weber 1, Wenzlau 1
Saves: 7
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September
05
Saturday
M. Water Polo
vs. Cal Lutheran (Navy Invitational)
- 10:40 AM
M. Water Polo
vs. Iona (Navy Invitational)
- 6:30 PM
September
06
Sunday
M. Water Polo
vs. Gannon (Navy Invitational)
- 1:00 PM
September
11
Friday
M. Water Polo
vs. Diablo Valley (Princeton Invitational)
- 2:00 PM
September
12
Saturday
M. Water Polo
vs. Harvard (Princeton Invitational)
- 6:00 PM
September
13
Sunday
M. Water Polo
vs. Pacific (Princeton Invitational)
- 12:00 PM
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September
17
Thursday
M. Water Polo
at Santa Clara
- 3:00 PM
September
19
Saturday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (NORCAL Tournament)
- TBA
September
20
Sunday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (NORCAL Tournament)
- TBA
September
26
Saturday
M. Water Polo
at Johns Hopkins
- 9:00 PM
September
27
Sunday
M. Water Polo
at George Washington
- 12:00 PM
October
10
Saturday
M. Water Polo
at Bucknell
- 7:00 PM
October
17
Saturday
M. Water Polo
vs. TBA (Ivy Championships)
- TBA
October
18
Sunday
M. Water Polo
vs. TBA (Ivy Championships)
- TBA
October
23
Friday
M. Water Polo
vs. Johns Hopkins
- 4:00 PM
October
24
Saturday
M. Water Polo
vs. Gannon
- 12:00 PM
M. Water Polo
at Navy
- 7:30 PM
October
25
Sunday
M. Water Polo
vs. George Washington
- 1:00 PM
October
31
Saturday
M. Water Polo
vs. Navy
- 12:00 PM
M. Water Polo
vs. Bucknell
- 7:00 PM
November
07
Saturday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (Southern Championships)
- TBA
November
08
Sunday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (Southern Championships)
- TBA
November
20
Friday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (CWPA Championships)
- TBA
November
21
Saturday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (CWPA Championships)
- TBA
November
22
Sunday
M. Water Polo
at TBA (CWPA Championships)
- TBA
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