Canada Seeks First Pan Am Games Men’s Water Polo Gold, Will Face USA in Final

Pan American Games – Men’s Water Polo

Canada will be looking to claim its first ever Pan American Games men’s water polo gold when it faces six-time reigning champion USA in the championship match on Saturday.

The USA men have won each of the last six Pan Am Games men’s water polo titles, dating to 1995, and 12 overall since the competition began in 1951. The Americans have finished on the podium in all 17 previous editions, winning 12 gold, four silvers and a bronze.

Canada has won bronze six times (1979, 1983, 1999, 2003, 2007 and 2015) and claimed silver in 2011.

Argentina has won gold twice (1951, 1955) and claimed silver in 1959 and bronze in 1963. Brazil owns 12 medals, one gold (1963), six silver (1951, 1967, 1995, 2003, 2007, 2015) and five bronze (1955, 1959, 1987, 1991, 2011).

Also on Saturday, Puerto Rico will face Cuba for fifth place, while Mexico and Peru will battle for seventh place.

Friday Results

Aug. 9 Matchup Result
5th Through 8th Classification Mexico vs. Puerto Rico Puerto Rico 15-14
5th Through 8th Classification Cuba vs. Peru Cuba 17-5
Semifinal Canada vs. Brazil Canada 8-7
Semifinal Argentina vs. USA USA 17-1

Saturday Schedule

Aug. 10
3 p.m. 7th Place Mexico s. Peru
4:30 p.m. 5th Place Puerto Rico vs. Cuba
6 p.m. Bronze Medal Brazil vs. Argentina
7:30 p.m. Gold Medal Canada vs. USA

Friday Recaps

Puerto Rico def. Mexico 15-14

Puerto Rico bested Mexico 2-1 in a penalty shootout to claim a 15-14 victory after a back and forth game. Puerto Rico led 5-4 after the first eight minutes and boasted a slight 10-9 edge at the half.

Down 12-10 heading into the final stanza, Mexico outscored Puerto Rico 3-1 in the final stanza, including two goals by Daniel Velazquez Robles which gave the Mexicans a brief lead at 13-12. Misael Andino Montanez put in an extra-man goal for Puerto Rico with 1:11 left in regulation to tie it up at 13 all and force the shootout.

In regulation, Puerto Rico scored on 13 of its 25 shots (52.0 percent), including 6 of 11 extra-man tries. Eight players scored with five turning in two-goal performances: Abiel Quinones Lopez, Jose Loubriel Cuyar, Andino Montanez, Fernando Zayas Sanchez and Gabriel Robles Cruz.

Puerto Rico utilized two goalkeepers in regulation: Bryam Abel Richez Avila (2 of 11) and Jorge Torres Carnero (2 of 6).

Daniel Velazquez Robles scored four times to pace Mexico, while Erick Javier Juarez Diaz and Oliver Alvarez Basillo chipped in two goals apiece. Mexico converted 13 of its 23 shots (56.5 percent), including 6 of 13 extra-man tries and its lone penalty.

Cuba def. Peru 17-5

Cuba led 5-1 at the half, but put the game out of reach with a 12-4 advantage in the final 16 minutes of the 17-5 victory over Peru.

Giraldo Carales Manzano was a one-man wrecking crew for Cuba, accounting for nearly half of the team’s goals with eight scores. Ivey Arroyo Perez and Rafael Contreras Ruenes added hat tricks as Cuba made 17 of its 30 shots (56.7 percent), including 4 of 5 extra-man tries and 2 of 4 penalty attempts.

Both of Cuba’s goalkeepers managed a better than 50 percent save percentage with Gianny Lara Arias stopping 77.8 percent of the shots he faced (7 of 9), while Danilo Palacio Guillot added 4 saves in 7 attempts (57.1 percent).

Diego Villar Osterling and Augusto Otero Tori put in two goals apiece for Peru, while Sebastian Morales Gamboa rounded out the scoring. Peru made just 21.7 percent of its shots (5 of 23), including 3 of 7 extra-man tries and its lone penalty.

Canada def. Brazil 8-7

Canada outscored Brazil 3-1 in each of the first two quarters. Brazil stayed within striking distance and actually grabbed a 7-6 lead on a Pedro Real center shot goal with 2:22 to play, but could not complete the comeback.

A long distance shot by Aleksa Gardijan tied the score at 7 and Nicolas Constantin-Bicari put in a center shot for the game winner for Canada with 43 seconds to play. Brazil had one final try on an extra-man opportunity with 15 seconds left, but missed.

Canada made 8 of its 32 shots (25.0 percent), including just 2 of 11 extra-man tries. Constantin-Bicari and Jeremie Cote scored two goals apiece to lead six Canadian scorers.

Brazil converted 31.8 percent of its shots (7 of 22), including 3 of 8 extra-man opportunities and the game’s lone penalty. Gustavo Coutihno and Gustavo Guimaraes each scored twice for the Brazilians.

USA vs. Argentina

The Americans scored the first 12 goals of the game, before letting Argentina onto the scoreboard with 2:58 left in the third quarter. From there, the USA poured on five more goals en route to the 17-1 win and their 17th straight championship match appearance.

Johnny Hooper put in seven goals to lead six scorers for the United States. Alex Bowen and Luca Cupido added in three goals apiece, while Hannes Daube also registered a multi-score performance. The Americans put in 17 of 33 shots (51.5 percent), including 7 of 11 extra-man tries and 2 of 3 penalty attempts.

Goalkeeper Alex Wolf stopped 13 of the 14 shots he faced (92.9 percent).

Argentina made just 1 of 19 shots (5.3 percent), including 1 of 6 extra-man tries. The team missed its lone penalty attempt. Carlos Exequiel Camnasio scored the team’s lone goal on an extra-man try.

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4 years ago

Winner goes to the Olympics
Loser to the Olympic qualifier with a bunch of more experienced European teams that haven’t made it thus far