Courtesy: USA Water Polo
BERLIN, Germany – The USA Men’s National Team took sixth place at the FINA World Cup following a 10-7 loss to Croatia.
Luca Cupido (Santa Margherita, Italy/California/Olympic Club), Ben Stevenson (Reno, NV/Pacific/Alumni) and Ben Hallock (Westlake Village, CA/Stanford/LA Premier) all scored two goals in the defeat. McQuin Baron (North Tustin, CA/USC/NYAC) recorded nine saves in net.
All matches streamed live and are available on-demand on FINA TV by visiting FINATV.LIVE (subscription required). For more information on the Team USA roster, schedule and new rules that are being tested at this event, click here.
It was a low scoring affair early with Croatia leading just 1-0 after the opening eight minutes. Croatia went ahead 2-0 in the second quarter before Cupido got Team USA on the board for a 2-1 game with 6:01 to play in the first half. Croatia followed with three straight goals and built a 5-1 lead at halftime.
In the second half Croatia continued to build their lead adding on three more goals to go in front 8-3 after three quarters. Croatia went ahead 9-3 early in the fourth before Team USA scored two straight from Hallock and Cupido for a 9-5 game with 5:12 to go. Croatia scored on the next possession to lead 10-5 to all but confirm the victory. Team USA would get two goals late in the quarter but they would not factor in the decision.
Team USA went 3/11 on power plays and 0/2 on penalties with Croatia going 2/13 on power plays and 1/1 on penalty attempts. Team USA ends the FINA World Cup with a 2-4 record earning wins over South Africa and Japan. Hungary claimed first place with Australia taking second place and Serbia earning bronze. Germany took fourth place, Croatia fifth, Team USA in sixth, Japan in seventh and South Africa rounding things out in eighth.
Scoring – Stats
USA 7 (0, 1, 2, 4) B. Hallock 2, L. Cupido 2, B. Stevenson 2, A. Obert 1
CRO 10 (1, 4, 3, 2)
Saves – USA – M. Baron 9
6×5 – USA – 3/11- CRO – 2/13
Penalties – USA – 0/2 – CRO – 1/1