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Dukes, Price Shine; Women's Water Polo Pulls Away from Brown, 7-5

Ariel Dukes led Harvard to a 7-5 win over Brown Wednesday night (photo Harvard Athletic Communications).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Ariel Dukes made 13 saves  to propel Harvard's defense and the offense provided just enough support, as the Crimson women's water polo team beat Brown, 7-5, at Blodgett Pool Wednesday night.

Harvard (10-9) moved back over .500 with the victory and pushed its CWPA Southern Division mark to 2-1.

Dukes made four saves and shutout Brown in the first quarter to help Harvard jump to a 2-0 lead. Dukes covered the entire goal in the frame, making saves on each post, to anchor the Crimson defense. Monica Zdrojewski and Shayna Price each scored in the first to give Harvard its lead. Zdrojewski scored on a fire to the top right corner and S. Price converted over the top of Brown's goalie.

Brown evened the score with goals on consecutive possessions three minutes into the second period. Harvard quickly answered with a pair of scores on two straight possessions with two minutes left on the clock. Aisha Price scored the first after a Harvard timeout and Zdrojewski gave the Crimson a 4-2 advantage entering halftime with her second goal of the game.

The slow offensive pace of the game continued, as defensive play dominated in the third. The teams traded saves and deflections before Brown scored the only goal of the quarter with 3:11 remaining. The Bears had an opportunity to tie the score with two minutes left in the stanza, but Dukes grabbed a floating shot with her left hand to kill Brown's breakaway chance.

Harvard took a 4-3 lead into the fourth and began to pull away. The Crimson's last quarter charge began with a highlight reel goal on a tip pass from Devan Kennifer to Elise Molnar. With the ball fumbling in front of the net on the left side and Brown's goalie charging, Kennifer flicked the ball to the middle where Molnar easily shot into a wide open goal.

The Crimson continued to build its lead when Kennifer fired a shot from the point in the cage with 4:29 on the clock and S. Price snuck a shot into the top left corner with 3:38 showing. The 7-3 lead would be the largest of the game for Harvard, as Brown scored the next two tallies, but it was too late for the Bears to mount a serious comeback.

Brown's only possession after its fifth goal started with three seconds on the clock and ended in yet another Dukes save.

Other than Dukes in goal, S. Price was the star of the game, as the sophomore accumulated two goals, three assists and five steals in the contest. Molnar and A. Price each added three steals.

Harvard will travel to Washington, D.C., March 31 for two more CWPA Southern Division matches. The Crimson will take on Merchyhurst and host George Washington in D.C., before returning home April 10 for the regular season finale against Hartwick.

Goals
Aisha Price
Devan Kennifer
Elise Molnar
Monica Zdrojewski 2
Shayna Price 2 

Assists
Aisha Price
Devan Kennifer
Monica Zdrojewski
Shayna Price 3
 
Steals
Aisha Price 3
Shannon Purcell
Devan Kennifer
Elise Molnar 3
Shayna Price 5 

Saves 
Ariel Dukes 13