The women’s water polo team finished its season in fourth place, after two losses during the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference postseason tournament.
In its first game of the tournament April 22, the women’s water polo team defeated No. 4 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 10-8.
“Overall, it was our second half defense that came through in the end,” said Head Coach Eric Ploessel.
The game was close from the beginning. After the first half, Claremont (9-18, 6-5) had a 5-4 lead over No. 5 Chapman. However, the Panthers came back in the second half, led by senior attacker Alison Quincy, who scored four of her game-high six goals in the second half.
The win moved Chapman (10-20, 5-6) into a semifinal matchup against No. 1 Whittier College (26-7, 11-0) April 23.
“We have to figure out what they did to beat us,” Ploessel said before the game. “We need to focus on every situation and take away what they’re good at.”
Unfortunately for the Panthers, they fell to Whittier 17-9. While the Panthers were able to replicate a similar offensive performance as they had against Claremont, they were simply unable to contain the offense that led Whittier to an undefeated conference season and championship.
The loss moved Chapman into a third-place match against No. 2 Pomona-Pitzer (14-16, 9-2) April 24. The Panthers met a similar fate, losing 8-6 to the Sagehens.
“We lost to Pomona today by two and they won the last four national championships,” Ploessel said. “We were close – we were so close. In that game today we had our opportunities, we just didn’t finish. We could tie it, we just couldn’t take the lead, but we had our chances.”
The loss left Chapman with a fourth place finish in the conference championships, though the final result had no effect on its final standing at fourth place in the conference.
“Even if we would’ve won today, the third-place game, we still would’ve ended up fourth overall in the conference because Pomona had only lost one game this year,” Ploessel said.
Regarding the team’s overall performance on the season, Ploessel said he was happy with how the team had performed.
“We played pretty well,” Ploessel said. “There are some talented teams in our conference. We have a lot of good players.”