Boys Waterpolo Defeats Malvern Prep in Nail-Biter

This past Tuesday, the Boys Varsity Water Polo team defeated Malvern Preparatory School with 49 seconds left in a nail-biting game, ending in a final score of 14-13. The team now has a season record of 8-1, excluding tournament play.

This past Tuesday, the Boys Varsity Water Polo team defeated Malvern Preparatory School with 49 seconds left in a nail-biting game, ending in a final score of 14-13. The team now has a season record of 8-1, excluding tournament play.

In the first quarter, both teams played very strong defense. Malvern went up 2-0 after two minutes, scoring one of its two goals in a man-up situation. Lawrenceville, however, came back within a minute, with Captain Marvin Dominguez ’20 scoring in the set position—the position closest to the net and the most aggressive in water polo—off an assist by Tim Barry ’21. Both Dominguez and Barry contributed significantly to the Lawrenceville offense, each scoring four goals in the game. In the ensuing Malvern position, Aidan Oster ’20 stole the ball, passing to Barry for a fast-break goal. Oster and Barry, who have dominated fast breaks all season, used their speed and connection to score another goal in the quarter, putting Lawrenceville up 3-2. Malvern scored three more times in the quarter, two of which were off foul shots. When fouled outside of five meters from the goal, players are allowed to take an undefended shot, allowing Malvern to finish the quarter up, 5-3.

Although Lawrenceville got off to a slow start in the second quarter with inconsistent shooting, Big Red was able to regain its footing after a Malvern goal two minutes into the quarter. After his shot that hit the post, Grayson Miller ’21 was able to get his own rebound and score a goal, starting Lawrenceville’s comeback, which was quickly followed by a steal and fast-break goal by Oster, putting Lawrenceville only one goal behind Malvern. Malvern scored a goal off a five-meter penalty, which is given for more serious fouls and lets a player take a one on one shot on the goalie from five meters away. Lawrenceville, determined to rebound and tie the game back up, finished the half with two goals from Barry, both of which were assisted by Oster, tying the game up at 7-7 at half time.

In the third quarter, the two teams exchanged the lead several times. When Dominguez drew a five-meter penalty from the set position, Oster capitalized and scored a goal, tying the game 9-9 with two minutes left in the quarter. On the next possession, Malvern drew an exclusion on goalie Varun Kumar ’21, who led Lawrenceville’s defense from the net, blocking 61 percent of shots taken on him. During Kumar’s exclusion, or a 30-second penalty given to players that commit an ‘exclusion foul,’ a more serious foul than an ‘ordinary foul,’ Malvern was able to score on Lawrenceville’s defenseless net, ending the quarter with a one-goal advantage.

Dominguez came up big for the team in the fourth quarter, scoring two goals at the beginning of the frame which turned the tides in Lawrenceville’s favor. His remarkable effort put Big Red up by one with five minutes left in the quarter. Lawrenceville and Malvern went back and forth, both scoring two goals to level the game 13-13 with only minutes left. One of Lawrenceville’s goals came from Colin Miles ’21 on a foul outside of five meters while the 30-second shot clock was running out of time. With merely 49 seconds left in the game, Dominguez once again scored from set off an assist by Barry, but the game was not over yet. With 30 seconds left in playing time, Oster was excluded, giving Malvern a man-up situation to try and tie the game back up, but Kumar blocked their skip shot from the right wing, securing Lawrenceville’s hard fought win.

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