After a grueling 15-hour round trip to Salem, Va., and setting a school record, the Gannon University men’s water polo team returned home Sunday with a sparkling 8-3 overall record and a 4-0 mark in Mid-Atlantic Water Polo Conference action.
The Knights capped a four-game weekend sweep in Virginia with an 11-9 victory Sunday over rival Mercyhurst University.
With the sweep, the Knights have won eight straight regulation games, a new school record.
Gannon kicked off its win spree Saturday in a 19-9 victory against Penn State Behrend in the CWPA Weekend hosted by Salem International.
Big scorers for the Knights were senior Marko Sadikovic and freshman Vladimir Diaz, bothwith five goals.
Eight other Gannon players put notches on the board, tying a season-high for the Knights.
Sophomore Joey Dempsey roped in four assists against Behrend and freshman Thomas Squeglia had stats in three columns with two goals, three assists and three steals.
The Knights followed that with an 18-12 win over Connecticut College.
Junior Gilberto Millan had an extraordinary performance, netting six goals, three assists and two steals to help the Knights get the win.
Freshman Jack Donnelly had a career-high four goals with an assist on another goal. Senior Michael Squeglia also got in on the scoring action with a goal, an assist and four steals.
Sunday proved to be another successful day at the office for the Knights. Millan wasted no time getting at the throats of Monmouth College as he scored mere seconds into the match to give Gannon a lead it never gave up on the way to a 17-13 victory.
At halftime, the Knights led Monmouth 14-5. During one stretch that spanned the second and third quarters, the Knights collected seven straight goals. Leading the charge for Gannon was redshirt sophomore Zarko Sadikovic with six goals.
Monmouth picked it up toward the end of the match, scoring seven of the last eight goals, but Gannon’s lead was too big to overcome.
In the fourth and final game of the invitational, the Knights took on rival Mercyhurst and brought home the narrow win.
Unlike its previous match Gannon trailed 6-4 at half. Still down in the second half, 9-7, the Knights scored the final four goals of the game to complete the weekend sweep.
Donnelly scored the go-ahead goal with less than 80 seconds remaining in the game and Zarko Sadikovic threw the hammer down as he scored the last goal 24 seconds before the match ended.
Gannon used its shots wisely, getting the win while being outshot 39-29 by the Lakers. Two Knights wreaked some havoc. Sophomore Brett Rehrer set a new school record with 26 saves in goal and Millan moved into the top-10 all-time in career goals at Gannon with 104.
Up next Gannon will host Mt. San Antonio in an exhibition match at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8.