Olympic Water Polo Star Betsey Armstrong Retires

Betsey Armstrong, the most decorated goalkeeper in international women’s water polo history, has announced her retirement from the USA Water Polo Women’s National Team. A two-time Olympic medalist from Ann Arbor, Michigan, Armstrong joined the Women’s National Team in 2006 helping jumpstart an unprecedented run of success. She anchored the defense of a team that won an Olympic Gold Medal (2012), Olympic Silver Medal (2008), two FINA World Championships (2007, 2009), two Pan American Games Gold Medals (2007, 2011), one FINA World Cup (2010), and six FINA World League Super Final Gold Medals (2006-07, 09-12).

Betsey Armstrong (courtesy of USA WaterPolo)

Betsey Armstrong (courtesy of USA WaterPolo)

“Water polo has meant everything to me—it’s been my livelihood since it navigated me through school, college and everything to follow. To say it’s been my life is an understatement. It has opened my heart to experiences and relationships that would have not otherwise existed. It has taught me everything I know about myself, the person I am and the person I want to be. The most important thing of all is that it has given me a family and community that will always feel like home,” said Armstrong.

She added, “from the bottom of my heart I want to thank my teammates and coaches, our USA Water Polo staff and all of our friends at the USOC. I want to thank all of the water polo players and supporters out there who have stood by our team and program through the wins and losses. I want to thank my family—my parents for always encouraging me and supporting me even when it seemed crazy that a kid from Michigan could play in the big leagues. And my husband Chris, who has put up with the best and the worst of it all, and is more in love with this game than anyone else I know.”

“It’s hard to put into words what Betsey has meant to this program over the last eight years. More than being the most decorated goalie in our sports history, she’s been a loyal and unselfish teammate, a tireless professional in her approach, and a great ambassador for athletes from the Midwest and the state of Michigan,” said USA Women’s National Team Head Coach Adam Krikorian.

“On behalf of the entire USA Women’s Program, we thank Betsey for her enormous contribution on many levels. We will certainly miss seeing her at the pool on a daily basis but know that she will always be connected to this program moving forward,” added Krikorian.

A 2005 graduate of the University of Michigan, Armstrong was an All-America selection in her four seasons with the Wolverines and a finalist for the Cutino Award in 2004. She was inducted into the Collegiate Water Polo Association Hall of Fame in 2008. Named the Most Valuable Goalkeeper of both the 2007 FINA World Championships and 2012 Olympic Games, Armstrong was selected as FINA Aquatics World Magazine Female Water Polo Player of the Year in 2010 and Swimming World’s Female Water Polo Athlete of the Year in 2009. A longtime member of the New York Athletic Club, Armstrong helped her club team to countless National Championships and continues to compete for the organization today.

About USA Water Polo

USA Water Polo, Inc. is the national governing body for water polo in America, overseeing our United States Olympic program as well as 20 different championship events annually, such as Junior Olympics and Masters National Championships. With more than 40,000 members, USAWP is also the sanctioning authority for more than 500 Member Clubs and more than 400 tournaments nationwide. USAWP is committed to the development of the sport throughout the US. It fosters grass-roots expansion of the sport, providing a national system of affiliated clubs, certified coaches and officials.

Water Polo News / Swimming News courtesy of USA Water Polo.

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About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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