No. 13 Indiana water polo will host the Hoosier Invite this weekend in Bloomington at the Counsilman-Billingsley Aquatic Center. The teams Indiana will face include Villanova University, Harvard University, McKendree University and Marist College.
Villanova will commence their water polo season with the Hoosier Invite. In the previous season, the Wildcats collected the second-most wins in program history with a 20-15 record. Villanova ended the season with a 16-9 win at home over Virginia Military Institute.
Villanova’s junior attacker Stella Byles will return for another season after having an impressive sophomore campaign. Byles scored 70 goals, 102 points and 32 assists last season. Additionally, when Villanova beat Santa Clara University 15-11, the sophomore had a career high of five steals.
Harvard will also compete for the first time this season at the Hoosier Invite. Harvard is coming off a .767 season where they collected multiple wins over ranked teams. Ranked wins included then-No. 20 Princeton University, then-No. 22 Brown University and then-No. 25 Bucknell University.
The last time Indiana and Harvard met was this past March, when Indiana won the game 12-9 in overtime. Then-sophomore utility Zoe Crouch led the team with 6 points, three assists and one steal.
Indiana’s third competitor of the weekend will be McKendree. The Bearcats were undefeated on the road this past season with a 7-0 record. On the road, McKendree beat Penn State Behrend, Occidental College and Wittenberg University.
Head coach Colleen Lischwe not only represents the McKendree’s womens’ water polo team, but the mens’ water polo team as well. Lischwe is the only woman to be a head coach for a men’s NCAA water polo program.
Indiana’s final match-up of the weekend will be against Marist College. The Red Foxes spent Jan. 14 to Jan. 15 at The Rainbow Invite in Honolulu, HI. Marist went 1-2 in the invite after beating Loyola Marymount University and then losing to San Jose State University and University of Hawaii.
When Marist faced Indiana last year in the Michigan Tournament, Indiana won the matchup 18-6. This was an early loss in the season for the Red Foxes. The team recollected themselves and finished with an overall 25-14 record.
Indiana’s first match-up this weekend will be against Villanova at 10:30 A.M. Saturday at the Counsilman Billingsley Aquatic Center.
Follow reporter Marnie Sara (.@marniesara5) for updates throughout the rest of the Indiana water polo season.