ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Connecticut College Camels used a strong performance in the third period to pull away from the Utica College Pioneers on the way to a 12-7 victory and a spot in the fifth place game at the 2011 Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Division III Eastern Championship at Macalester College.
Attempting to overcome first-round losses, both teams began the match focused on defense with each program tallying solo markers in the first period.
The game remained tight due to the play of Utica goalie Kera Landon (Sr., Remsen, N.Y./Holland Patent) who kept the Pioneers locked with Connecticut at 4-4 leading into halftime. Landon recorded three of her nine saves in the game during the first half as the Camels failed to convert on three-of-four man-advantages in the first 16 minutes play due to the strong special teams defensive play of Utica.
The second half became a one-woman show as Player of the Game Kristin Lampley (So., Reading, Pa./Governor Mifflin) proved more than the difference in the second half scoring four goals over a five minute span in the third quarter to power the Camels' six goal outburst.
Leading 10-6 entering the fourth period, Lampley went back to work by converting Connecticut's final two power-plays in the fourth quarter to defuse a Utica comeback bid and add some insurance.
The conclusion of the game wraps up play on Day 1 for the Pioneers and Camels as Utica and Connecticut will return to action at Macalester's Leonard Natatorium on Saturday, April 30 in the placement round of the second-ever edition of the CWPA Division III Championship.
Connecticut advances to a fifth-place game meeting with No. 1 seed and No. 8-nationally ranked Carthage College at 10:25 a.m. on Saturday. Carthage, which was upset by No. 9 seed and tournament host Macalester in the Lady Reds first game of the tournament, defeated the Camels 19-4 earlier in the season.
Utica will clash with Pennsylvania State University-Behrend at 9:00 a.m. to determine which program advances to the seventh place game. The loser of the Pioneers-Behrend Lions meeting will claim position No. 9 in the nine-team bracket.
Connecticut Goals: Kristin Lampley (7); Emily Hunter (2); Gracie Miller; Katie Mullaley; Megan Wright
Utica Goals: Amanda Sulicz (3); Kristyn Galbraith; Sarah Gross; Evelyn Kurzac; Lisa Toril
Saves: Connecticut - Pam Lovejoy (6) ; Utica - Kera Landgon (9)
Exclusions: Connecticut - 2; Utica - 9
Advantage Opportunities: Connecticut - 5-for-9 ; Utica - 0-for-2
Sprints: Connecticut - 0-for-4 ; Utica - 4-for-4
Officials: Perry Korbakis, Ed Prystalski