Print Friendly, PDF & Email

ERIE, Pa. — The Bucknell University men’s water polo team completed a 4-0 weekend by scoring 41 goals over two games to take wins over Erie institutions Mercyhurst University, 23-5, and Gannon University, 18-13, respectively, at the Hallman Aquatics Center.

Bucknell improves to 9-6 overall, and has won six straight games.

The Bison scored a season-best 23 goals in overpowering host Mercyhurst, outscoring the Lakers 12-3 in the first half of play in cruising to a comfortable victory in the morning match-up.

Bucknell, trailing 2-0 to start the game, responded with aplomb, scoring eight unanswered goals over the next 12 minutes to take an 8-2 lead at the 5:01 mark of the second quarter.  The Bison continued to mount the pressure on the Lakers after a goal from the home team at the 4:31 mark of the second quarter, scoring four more unanswered goals, two by Matt Ryckman and a goal each by Maxime Touzot and Stefanovic, to take a 12-3 lead at the break.

The Bison kept the pressure on in the third quarter, scoring seven times in the frame before adding four more goals in the fourth to account for the most goals by the squad since a 23-14 win against Johns Hopkins University on October 12, 2019.

Aleksa Stefanovic scored a career-best six goals in the win, and was one of ten different Bison to find the back of the cage in the victory.  Jack Lewis followed up his seven-goal day in a win over Salem on Saturday with five more goals, while Ryckman, Colby Paine, Will Gildea and Touzot each added multiple goals.

Mateo Herrera made his Bison debut in the cage, spelling senior netminder Adrien Touzot and making six saves.  The first-year allowed just two goals in 14 minutes of play.

Bucknell’s second game of the day proved to be more of a back-and-forth affair, with Gannon and the Bison each trading goals through the first two periods.  The Bison once again overcame a slow start, as the Golden Knights scored the opening three goals of the game before Andu Vlasceanu broke a nearly five-minute scoreless streak at the 3:24 mark of the first quarter.  The senior then added one more goal just 30 seconds later to cut the lead to one.

However, Gannon added two more unanswered goals before goals from Ryckman and Lewis kept the advantage for the Golden Knights at one, 5-4, at the end of one quarter.   

Bucknell rallied in the second, scoring seven times in the frame. The Bison took the lead for the first time at the 4:31 mark of the second quarter on another goal by Lewis to take an 8-7 advantage.  The goal by the senior proved to be the third of six unanswered goals by the Bison after trailing 7-5 at the 6:07 mark of the quarter.

Hasan Mogultay put the finishing touches on Bucknell’s 6-0 run with 1:04 left in the third quarter, before the Golden Knights finally stopped the Bucknell run to open the fourth quarter at the 6:35 mark, breaking a nearly nine-minute scoreless streak for Gannon that spanned the third and the fourth frames.

Bucknell kept a multiple-goal advantage throughout the rest of the third and the fourth quarters, eventually pulling away in the fourth to take an 18-13 win.

Vlasceanu scored a career-best six goals in the win, while Stefanovic added another big game with five goals.  Lewis scored three times, while Ryckman and Mogultay each scored twice.  A. Touzot made seven saves in the victory for Bucknell.

Release courtesy Bucknell University Athletics Communications

Collegiate Water Polo Association