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Division III No. 5 Augustana College-vs.-Division III No. 9 Austin College Scoresheet (2024 Collegiate Water Polo Association Division III Championship – First Place)

NEW LONDON, Conn. — Casey Barragan (Jr., Commerce, Calif./La Serna/Fresno State University) scored five times to claim Player of the Game and Tournament Most Valuable Player accolades as Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Division III regular season champion/defending CWPA Division III Champion/Division III No. 5-ranked Augustana College overpowered Division III No. 9 Austin College, 14-10, in the 2024 CWPA Division III Championship title game.

Competing at Connecticut College’s Jane Cadwell Lott ’36 Natatorium, the Vikings (19-3, 8-0 CWPA Division III) repeated as league champion to join Grove City College (2010, 2011, 2012), Connecticut (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016), Macalester College (2017, 2018, 2019) and Austin (2021, 2022) in combining to account for all the CWPA Division III Championships since the formation of the group.  

It marked the third time in three years Augustana and Austin (8-11, 6-2 CWPA Division III) squared off for the league crown as the Kangaroos downed the Vikings in 2022 at Grove City in Grove City, Pa., by an 18-7 score prior to the Augustana avenging the loss last year with a 16-8 victory in St. Paul, Minn., at Macalester.

Austin – which earned its first league title in 2021 courtesy a 20-6 victory over Wittenberg University at Carthage College in Kenosha, Wis. – never led against Augustana as the Vikings jumped on the scoreboard 50 seconds into the game and never looked back in repeating as the league champion.

Barragan broke the ice for Augustana by scoring with 7:10 left in the first quarter prior to Annelie McGhee (Fr., Windermere, Fla./Olympia) padded the lead to 2-0 with 2:02 on the clock.

The teams traded goals over the remainder of the opening frame as Cory McGrath (Sr., Flower Mound, Texas/Marcus) put Austin on the scoreboard (1:48), Barragan struck again at 1:39 and Ashley Chand (Jr., Southlake, Texas/Southlake) answered for the Kangaroos at 1:26 before Annie Opal Dickson (Jr., Imperial Beach, Calif./Mar Vista) converted a man-up opportunity with 59 seconds remaining in the quarter for a 4-2 Augustana lead after eight minutes.

The second quarter saw more cards than goals as Ocean Akau (Jr., Pana’ewa, Hawaii/Kamehameha) increased Augustana’s scoreboard advantage to 5-2 with 6:18 until halftime and McGrath slipped in a shot with six ticks on the clock to make it 5-3 and sandwich a yellow card at 3:58 to the Austin bench, a yellow card to Augustana head coach Ryan Pryor at 3:13 and a yellow/red card to Austin head coach Mark Lawrence with 2:09 until the break.

Augustana began to put the game away in the opening minutes of the third quarter as Anita Rodgers (Fr., Salt Lake City, Utah/Kearns) (4:16, 1:48) and Maggie Caliendo (Jr., Orland Park, Ill./Carl Sandburg) (3:54) combined for a three-goal outburst to push ahead 8-3 and surround a red card to Lawrence (2:04).

Bianca Gallegos (So., Albuquerque, N.M./Manzano) chipped a goal off Austin’s deficit with a man-up strike at at 1:32 to commence a scoring spree as Waiahuli Akau (Fr., Pana’ewa, Hawaii/Kamehameha) (47 second), Gallegos (36 seconds, man-up), Ocean Akau (11 seconds, man-up) and Mikaela Torres (Fr., Cypress, Texas/Bridgeland) (one second) exchanged fire in the final minute as Augustana hit the 24-minute mark holding a 10-6 margin.

The fourth quarter saw both teams trade scoring blows as Barragan (6:43, 6:12, 3:47) and Charlotte Newport (Jr., Baytown, Texas/Ross S. Sterling) (1:58, penalty shot) buried four scores for the Vikings to keep pace with a quartet from the ‘Roos’ McGrath (6:30), Gallegos (5:56), Alyssa Ross (Sr., San Jose, Calif./Leland) (3:19) and Kylee Noble (Sr., Argyle, Texas/Guyer) (2:12) to establish the 14-10 final score.

For Austin – which joins Augustana in qualifying for the 2024 USA Water Polo Division III Collegiate Championship at a site to be determined in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) against the top two finishing teams from the SCIAC on Saturday-Sunday, May 4-5 – McGrath and Gallegos both notched hat-tricks.  Noble, Torres, Chand and Ross tacked on solo markers in support of a four save performance by Emily Engberson (Sr., Cooper Canyon, Texas/Marcus).

Barragan (five), Rodgers (two) and Ocean Akau (two) netted multi-goal games for Augustana with Caliendo, Opal Dickson, McGhee, Waiahuli Akau and Newport contributing solo markers.  Goalkeeper Lizzie Pelzman (Jr., Roseville, Calif./Roseville) registered 12 saves to pick up the victory.

1st Q 2nd Q 3rd Q 4th Q FINAL
Austin College
2 1 3 4 10
Augustana College 4 1 5 4 14
Augustana Goals: Casey Barragan (5); Anita Rodgers (2); Ocean Akau (2); Maggie Caliendo; Annie Opal Dickson; Annelie McGhee; Waiahuli Akau; Charlotte Newport
Austin Goals: Cory McGrath (3); Bianca Gallegos (3); Kylee Noble; Mikaela Torres; Ashley Chand; Alyssa Ross
Saves: Augustana – Lizzie Pelzman (12) ; Austin – Emily Engberson (4)
Exclusions: Augustana – 13; Austin – 13
Advantage Opportunities: Augustana – 3-for-13  ; Austin – 2-for-13
Sprints: Augustana – 3-for-4 (2nd, 3rd, 4th) ; Austin – 1-for-4 (1st)
Cards/Misconducts: YC – Austin (Bench, 3:58 left in 2nd Q); YC – Augustana (Head coach Ryan Pryor, 3:13 left in 2nd Q); Y/RC – Austin (Head coach Mark Lawrence, 2:09 left in 2nd Q); RC – Austin (Head coach Mark Lawrence, 2:04 left in 3rd Q)
Officials: Joe Peila, Martin Murray

Following the conclusion of the championship, the league announced the 2024 CWPA Division III Championship All-Tournament team:

2024 CWPA Division III Championship All-Tournament
Most Valuable Player: Casey Barragan (Augustana College)
Rookie of the Tournament: Pooja Bucklin (Macalester College)
Coach of the Tournament:  Ryan Pryor (Augustana College)
First Team
Susan Palmentera-Reid (Goalie) Augustana College
Casey Barragan Augustana College
Charlotte Newport Augustana College
Cory McGrath Austin College
Emma Luna Connecticut College
Jess Palmer-Sammons Macalester College
Emma Halle Washington & Jefferson College
Second Team
Ella Selman (Goalie) Carthage College
Alyssa Sayatovic Carthage College
Ocean Akau Augustana College
Ashley Chand Austin College
Alyssa Sayatovic Carthage College
Pooja Bucklin Macalester College
Darragh Martin Penn State Behrend
Hallie Ratcliff Washington & Jefferson College


Augustana College pregame huddle

Official Martin Murray drops the opening sprint

Austin College head coach Mark Lawrence

The Augustana College bench cheers a goal

Austin College’s Joslyn Dimitri (#4)

Augustana College’s Anita Rodgers (#21)

The Austin College bench cheers a steal

Augustana College assistant coach Peter Ollis

Augustana College’s Lizzie Pelzman (#1)

Augustana College head coach Ryan Pryor shouts instructions

2024 CWPA Division III Championship Second Place – Austin College

2024 CWPA Division III Champion – Augustana College

Collegiate Water Polo Association