de Castro-Abeger Scores Four as Tufts Stampede Past Macalester 11-5 in Men's Division III Club Championship Tournament Opening Round
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Alex de Castro-Abeger (Sr., North Hollywood, Calif.) rifled home four goals to earn Player of the Game honors and Benji Koltai (Jr., Beverly Hills, Calif.) whisked three shots into the cage as the defending National Champion Jumbos of Tufts University of the North Atlantic Division handled host Macalester College of the Heartland Division 11-5 in the opening game of the 2010 Men's Division III National Collegiate Club Championship in Macalester's Riley Pool.
The victory places the Jumbos into the semifinals against the winner of another first round game between Hamilton College and the University of California-Santa Cruz.
Tufts never trailed in the game opening up 1-0 and 3-1 leads in the first five minutes of play to begin to pull away from the Scots and advance to the program's second straight Division III club semifinals.
de Castro-Abeger opened the scoring with a five-meter penalty shot at the 6:05 mark before Macalester evened the damage at 1-1 with a blast by Nathan Schachtman (Fr., St. Louis, Mo.) at 3:56. However, Koltai and Travis Grodkiewicz (Jr., Glen Gardner, N.Y.) worked through the Scots' defense to rip shots into the cage at 2:29 and 2:07, respectively, to make it a 3-1 game.
Macalester cut into the margin as 2009 Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Scholar-Athlete of the Year Jeff Yamashita (Sr., Honolulu, Hawaii) scored on a man-up chance with 46 seconds remaining in the first period to return the Jumbos' advantage to a single tally. Inbar Fried (Fr., Los Altos, Calif.) responded for Tufts before the end of the period as he found the back of the cage with a rocket from the wings to set the score at 4-2.
The goal ignited the Jumbos' offense to walk out to a 7-3 lead by halftime as Koltai opened the second period with a sweep shot at 5:28 and de Castro-Abeger tacked on markers at 4:56 and 2:01 to make it 7-2. Macalester closed out the half with a man-up score by Nathan Young (Sr., Denver, Colo.) to move the Scots within four at the break.
Macalester failed to get any closer in the game as Koltai completed a hat-trick at the 5:09 mark and Austin Wood (Fr., Philadelphia, Pa.) put in another goal at 4:50 to make it 9-3 as the Jumbos cruised to the six goal victory.
In cage, Brian Canter (Sr., Willow Grove, Pa.) finished with 13 saves in earning the victory for Tufts, while Vasa Trubetskoy (Sr., Middleton, Wisc.) notched seven for Macalester.
Macalester Goals: Nate Schachtman (2); Jeff Yamashita (2); Nathan Young
Tufts Goals: Alex de Castro-Abeger (4); Benji Koltai (3); Inbar Fried; David Meyer; Austin Wood; Travis Grodkiewicz
Saves: Macalester - Vasa Trubetskoy (7) ; Tufts - Brian Canter (13)
Exclusions: Macalester - 6 ; Tufts - 7
Advantage Opportunities: Macaleter - 2-for-7; Tufts - 1-for-6
Sprints: Macalester - 2-for-4 ; Tufts - 2-for-4