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No. 20 Men's Water Polo Defeats Mercyhurst for Third Place at Easterns

Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications                                                                      Release: 11/18/2012
Courtesy: Beverly Schaefer
Kurt Buchbinder had a hat trick Sunday.
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The No. 20 Princeton men's water polo team concluded the 2012 campaign with a third-place finish at the Eastern Championship, defeating No. 17 Mercyhurst 13-9 Sunday at DeNunzio Pool.

Kurt Buchbinder led the offense with three goals, while freshman goalie Alex Gow was solid in the cage making 11 saves. He also had two assists and steal in the game.

Mercyhurst opened with a 2-0 run, before Billy Tifft scored on a 6-on-5 play at 5:11 and Buchbinder evened the game at 2:20. Princeton took its first lead with 58 seconds left in the first, with Tim Wenzlau finding the back of the net to lift the Tigers to a 3-2 advantage.

From that point forward Princeton never relinquished its lead, holding off Mercyhurst for the remainder of the game.

Goals from Wenzlau and Tommy Donahue at 3:39 and 2:15, respectively, in the second quarter helped the Tigers' lead swell to 6-3.

Princeton remained in control of the game after halftime, taking off on a 5-0 run off a pair of goals from Buchbinder. The scoring rally spanned the third quarter and into the fourth to hold a 12-5 advantage.

The game wrapped up with Mercyhurst going on a final 2-1 run.

Donahue, Wenzlau and Tifft each had a pair of goals apiece, and Jamie Kuprenas, Matt Pugliese, Jack Ruth and Matt Weber each found the back of the net once. Weber also led the team with three steals.

Wenzlau was named to the Eastern All-Tournament First Team and Drew Hoffenberg picked up second team honors.

Princeton: 3 - 3 - 3 - 4  - 13
Mercyhurst: 2 - 1 - 2 - 4 - 9

Goals: Buchbinder 3, Donahue 2, Kuprenas 1, Pugliese 1, Ruth 1, Tifft 2, Weber 1, Wenzlau 26
Assists: Buchbinder 1, Butler 2, Donahue 2, Kuprenas 1, Ruth 1, Wenzlau 2
Saves: Gow 11, Byrne (3:39) 2
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