Sept. 8, 2008
Cambridge, Mass. - The MIT water polo team had a disappointing start to its 2008 campaign, dropping all four of its contests at the Navy Open in Annapolis over the weekend. The Engineers fell to the Naval Academy's "B" squad, 14-6, and Mercyhurst, 11-9, on Saturday, before losing to Johns Hopkins, 10-7, and George Washington, 7-5, on Sunday. Mike Smith-Bronstein led all MIT (0-4) scorers, with seven goals in the four games.
The Midshipmen's "B" team got off to a quick start on Saturday morning, opening up a 9-4 lead after two quarters, before going on to win by the final, eight-goal margin. Mark Artz had a pair of goals for MIT, which got one goal contributions from four other scorers, including Smith-Bronstein, Matt Perkins, John Preis, and Matt Chapa. The Engineers were only able to take advantage of two of their nine man-up opportunities, while Navy converted all three such chances.
In their second game on Saturday, MIT spotted Mercyhurst a 6-2 halftime advantage and were unable to battle back despite five goals in the final period. Smith-Bronstein and Palmer Rosemond recorded hat tricks for the Engineers, while Artz, Brian Gardiner and Devin Lewis also found the back of the net.
MIT looked to bounce back on Sunday versus Johns Hopkins but were unable to get a win, despite a pair of tallies each from Smith-Bronstein, Lewis and Preis. Junior goalkeeper Nick Souza had six saves in the losing effort.
In their final contest of the weekend, the Engineers matched George Washington with three goals in the first-half, before finally falling 7-5 to end the tournament with their fourth loss. Perkins had a pair of goals and Smith-Bronstein, Souza and Chapa rounded out the scoring for Tech. Freshman goalkeeper Columbus Leonard had nine saves in the contest, but was bested by his Colonials' counterpart Craig Merlin, who recorded 14 stops.
MIT will be back in action this weekend, as they host their own Invitational, starting Friday, September 12 at 7:00 p.m. against Washington & Jefferson. The Engineers will also host Boston College, Cal Baptist and Boston University in the tournament.