Coyotes, Golden Gophers compete in water polo The Coyote water polo squad was back in action Sunday, Oct. 22 against the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers.
Although the Coyotes usually play with a coed squad consisting of men and women, they played with two squads. Each team participated in two games Sunday at the DakotaDome.
The men notched another win to their record improving to 3-2 with a win over the Golden Gophers of Minnesota. The Coyotes opened up the morning with a win over Minnesota at 10 a.m. As the game progressed into the third and fourth periods, the Coyotes developed a sizable lead, ending the game with a 6-point victory 14-8.
The Coyotes were led offensively by John Javorski, Larry White and Chuck Scriber. White, a senior at USD, and Scribner, a freshman, came up with big defensive plays as well, along with Ryan O'Malley and Dave Molesworth. David Kovar had a solid game in goal for the Coyotes.
However, later in the afternoon the Coyotes record was evened when the Golden Gophers defeated them 9-6. During the game every member of the Coyotes saw action in the pool, while the starters received limited playing time. The team's advisor Ron Allen was looking for everyone to receive playing time before the championship tournament, taking place in Minnesota Nov. 4 and 5.
Once again the Coyotes were led by outstanding play on both sides of the ball by Scribner and White, while Kovar had another well-played game in goal for the Coyotes.
The women competed in two games as well. The games proved to be exciting and showed that there is some defining talent and potential for a women's water polo team in the future.
During the first game the Coyote women spent most of their time settling in and developing a feel for the game. The Coyotes were defeated 7-4 by Minnesota, but gave great effort.
Sara Hamlet and Kristy Healy provided the leadership for the young and inexperienced team. Ashley Schafer, a freshman, along with Hamlet and Healy provided the big plays for the Coyotes.
As the second game opened it was obvious to the spectators and observers that the Lady Coyotes team had improved immensely. It appeared as if the women had become much more comfortable with the game and their teammates as they ended a two period game in a 3-3 tie with the Golden Gophers.
More Lady Coyotes provided outstanding performances, including Marie Strubel in the goal and Kari Kopecky offensively. In addition, Hamlet, Healy and Schafer stepped it up on both sides of the ball providing exciting plays and leadership.
The men are now practicing and preparing for an exciting championship tournament which will include teams from the University of Nebraska Lincoln, University of Minnesota, Kansas University, Iowa State University, Western Illinois University, University of Northern Illinois, and Washington University of St. Louis.