September 12, 2005

Water Polo Invitational A Success

Sept. 12, 2005

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The MIT water polo team kicked off their 2005 Invitational with a dramatic 6-5 victory over rival Harvard on Friday night, and they continued to role through Sunday. Behind a stingy defense, the Engineers were able to pick up victories over Yale University (17-5), University of Toronto (11-2), Florida International University (10-7) and Connecticut College (11-3).

MIT's only blemish came against the reigning national club champions, the New York Athletic Club, a team made up of a few former Olympians and national team members. The Engineers experienced difficulty matching up against the NYAC and fell 13-4. But overall, the Engineers and head coach Felix Mercado were happy with the weekend's results.

"I think this young team is starting to click as a unit," said senior John Rogers, who was second on the team with 13 goals over the weekend. "We still are far from where we want to be, but I think we are ahead of where we thought we were going to be."

Head coach Felix Mercado supported his sniper's comments.

"Defensively, I think the guys understand what we want to do," said Mercado. "While offensively we weren't as effective as we wanted to be, our team played smart and protected the ball."

"I once heard this in a movie, and I think it applies to our offense. Our offense is like Novocain. While it may not be complex and complicated, if you give it time, it will get the job done."

Leading the Engineers on offense was senior Grady Snyder, who exploded for 15 goals. Also, junior Kevin Amendt tallied 9 goals, and freshmen Mike Smith Bronstein (6 goals) and Dallas Chase (5 goals) paced MIT. On the defensive end, sophomore Morgan Laidlaw had 18 steals and goalkeeper Rob Truax had 43 saves and 10 steals.

The Engineers will travel down to Providence, R.I. to square off against Brown University on Wednesday night at 8 p.m.