Rio Day 3 Water Polo Roundup: Brazil Men Upset Gold-Favored Serbia


  • Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Swimming: August 6-13
  • Olympic Aquatics Stadium, Barra Olympic Park, Rio de Janeiro
  • Prelims – 9:00 a.m/12:00 p.m PST/EST (1:00 p.m local), Finals – 6:00 p.m/9:00 p.m PST/EST (10:00 p.m local)
  • Schedule & Results

Recap of men’s water polo from Day 3 of matches, August 10, 2016:

Game 1 – Australia 8, Japan 6

With both team winless at the bottom of Group A standings, they each hoped for the win that would keep them in the race to the quarterfinals. After a close first half that ended in a 3-3 tie at halftime, things began to heat up. Australia scored three unanswered goals within the first 5 minutes of the 3rd period. Japan notched a pair of goals in the final minute of the quarter. Going into the 4th quarter it was 6-5 to Australia. Japan had several opportunities in the final quarter but they couldn’t get past Australian goalkeeper Joel Dennerley, who saved 9 of 13 shots from the time he came into the match at the beginning of the 2nd quarter. Australia’s Joe Kayes led all scorers with 4 goals; teammate Aaron Younger had 3. Joel Swift also scored 1 for Australia. Koji Takei and Keigo Okawa had 2 goals each to lead Japan, while Mitsuaki Shiga scored once. Japan goalkeeper Katsuyuki Tanamura saved 13 of 21 shots.

Next: Australia will meet Serbia Friday at 9:10 p.m. ET. Japan plays Hungary on Friday at 8 a.m. ET.

Game 2 – Hungary 8, Greece 8

Hungary controlled the play for most of the first half and led 3-2 at the break. Greece turned the tables at the beginning of the third quarter with a barrage of goals, going up 4-3 to take the lead for the first time. Angelos Vlachopoulos, who had exited the game in the first half after taking a shot to the face, scored the first goal for Greece in the second half on a power play. Konstantinos Genidounias scored next to put Greece ahead. Hungary answered with a pair of goals at the beginning of the 4th quarter to move back into the lead, 7-6. Greece evened the score, then Hungary went up 8-7. Greece ended the match on a thrilling note as Vlachopoulos scored from long range to tie the game at 8-8 with five seconds left on the clock. Vlachopoulos wound up with 3 goals for Greece. Alexandres Gounas and Genidounias each had 2, while Konstantinos Mourikis scored once. Scoring for Hungary were Balazs Harai (3), Balazs Erdely (1), Marton Vamos (1), Daniel Varga (1), Gergo Zalanki (1), and Norbert Hosnyanszky (1).

Next: Hungary plays against Japan on Friday at 8 a.m. ET. Greece will face Japan at 6:30 p.m. ET Friday.

Game 3 – U.S. 6, France 3

See our write-up here.

Game 4 – Italy 6, Montenegro 5

Italy continued its winning ways with a narrow victory over Montenegro. The two teams put up a defensive battle for much of the match. Italy scored the first two goals in the first quarter; Montenegro added one just before the end of the quarter. Both teams scored once in the second quarter and Italy led 3-2 heading into the halftime break. Italy went up 4-2 in the third period while holding Montenegro scoreless. Most of the offensive activity took place during the final period, as Montenegro found the net 3 times, while Italy added 2 to its tally. Montenegro had a chance to even the score with 33 second remaining, but Italy’s defense proved too much. Italy’s scorers were Francesco Di Fulvio (3), Pietro Figlioli (1), Valentino Gallo (1), and Christian Prescuitti (1). Darko Brguljan led the Montenegro effort with 2 goals, while Sasa Misic, Aleksandar Ivovic, and Drasko Brguljan scored 1 each.

Next: Italy will take on Croatia Friday at 9:20 a.m. ET. Montenegro will meet U.S.A. Friday at 10:40 a.m. ET.

Game 5 – Brazil 6, Serbia 5

Brazil has been on a tear during these Olympic Games on their home turf. They played the match of the day by defeating gold medal favorites Serbia, 6-5, to remain undefeated in group play. Serbia went up 2-0 in the first quarter, but Serbia outscored them 3-1 in the second quarter and the teams went off tied at the half, 3-3. Brazil scored 2 unanswered goals in the 3rd quarter, to go up 5-3. Serbia evened the score with 3:42 left in the 4th period, but they couldn’t get another goal past Brazilian goalkeeper Slobodan Soro. The two teams traded saves until Brazil scored on a penalty with :46 left to go, ending the game with a 6-5 win. Undefeated Brazil, who hadn’t even qualified for the Olympics in water polo in more than 30 years, is now guaranteed a spot in the quarterfinals. That’s something they haven’t done since 1920. Scoring for Brazil: Josip Vrlic (2), Bernardo Oneto Gomes (1), Adrian Baches (1), Felipe Perrone (1), and Gustavo Guimares (1). Serbia had 5 different players score one goal each: Slobodan Nikic, Filip Filipovic, Dusan Mandic, Sava Randelovic, and Stefan Mitrovic.

Next: Brazil will meet Greece Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET. Serbia plays Australia Friday night at 9:10 p.m. ET.

Game 6 – Spain 9, Croatia 4

The second upset of the day came when Spain defeated 2012 Olympic Gold Medalists, Croatia. Spain dominated the match, leading the Croatians in each of the four quarters. Spain scored two unanswered goals in the first period and were up 4-1 heading into the halftime break. Croatia put two on the board in the third quarter, but Spain overpowered them 4 goals to 1 in the final period to wind up with a 9-4 win. In addition to their strong offensive performance, the Spaniards mounted an excellent defense, holding Croatia to 16% shooting average for the night. Spanish goalkeeper Daniel Pinedo had 11 saves on 15 shots on goal. Gonzalo Echenique led Spain with 4 goals. Five of his teammates scored 1 goal each: Guillermo Molina Rios, Marc Minguell Alferez, Balasz Sziranyi Somogyi, Albert Espanol Lifante, and Francisco Fernandez Miranda. Croatia had four different players score 1 each: Maro Jokovic, Andro Buslje, Sandro Sukno, and Javier Garcia Gadea.

Next: Spain takes on France on Friday at 7:50 p.m. ET. Croatia will meet Italy on Friday at 9:20 a.m. ET.


Group A

1 Brazil 6 3 3 0 0 30 20 10
2 Greece 4 3 1 2 0 25 24 1
3 Australia 3 3 1 1 1 24 23 1
3 Hungary 3 3 0 3 0 30 30 0
5 Serbia 2 3 0 2 1 27 28 -1
6 Japan 0 3 0 0 3 21 32 -11

Group B

1 Italy 6 3 3 0 0 26 21 5
2 Croatia 4 3 2 0 1 19 21 -2
2 Spain 4 3 2 0 1 27 22 5
4 Montenegro 2 3 1 0 2 19 18 1
4 United States 2 3 1 0 2 20 20 0
6 France 0 3 0 0 3 15 24 -9



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Andro Buslje and Sandro Sukno are Croatian players, not Andro Buslke and Sandro Sunko 🙂

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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