USA Men’s Water Polo Will Play for Ninth Place at Worlds

Courtesy: USA Water Polo

GWANGJU, South Korea – The USA Men’s National Team defeated South Africa 20-3 today to advance to the ninth place match at the FINA World Championship.

Ben Hallock (Westlake Village, CA/Stanford/LA Premier), Max Irving (Long Beach, CA/UCLA/NYAC) and Alex Bowen (Santee, CA/Stanford/NYAC) all scored four goals in the victory with Alex Wolf (Huntington Beach, CA/UCLA/Bruin) and Drew Holland (Orinda, CA/Stanford/Olympic Club) adding 18 saves in net. Team USA will now meet Montenegro on July 25 for ninth place at 11am local time/10pm et/7pm pt (July 24). Follow @USAWP on Twitter for live coverage of the match as no streaming is expected.

Team USA stormed out of the gates strong on offense opening up a 5-0 lead over South Africa with two of the first three goals coming from Hallock. Hannes Daube (Long Beach, CA/USC/North Irvine WPC) and Bowen finished off the quarter with scores for the five goal advantage. In the second quarter the United States erupted for eight goals, with seven straight delivered before South Africa got on the board. Bowen piled up three goals in the period while Hallock added two more en route to a 13-1 halftime lead.

South Africa had their best offensive quarter in the second scoring twice but Irving countered with two goals of his own among the five scored for Team USA. Jesse Smith (Coronado, CA/Pepperdine/NYAC), Matt Farmer (La Grange, Ill/UCLA/Windy City WP) and Chancellor Ramirez (Pasadena, CA/UCLA/NYAC) all connected for goals as well to push the lead to 18-3. Team USA tacked on two more goals in the fourth quarter from Irving and Daube on their way to the 20-3 win.

The United States went 9/15 on power plays and 2/2 on penalties with South Africa going 0/3 on power plays and 1/2 on penalties.

For more on the USA roster at the FINA World Championships, click here for the roster announcement.

Scoring – Stats
USA 20 (5, 8, 5, 2) B. Hallock 4, M. Irving 4, A. Bowen 4, H. Daube 2, J. Hooper 2, C. Ramirez 1, L. Cupido 1, M. Farmer 1, J. Smith 1
RSA 3 (0, 1, 2, 0) N. Rodda 1, D. Cronje 1, M. Spencer 1
Saves – USA – A. Wolf 9, D. Holland 9 – RSA – K. Clark 7, L. Madi 1
6×5 – USA – 9/15 – RSA – 0/3
Penalties – USA – 2/2 – RSA – 1/2

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3 years ago

Sadly, another underwhelming performance by the American men. Maybe a change in the development and selection process is in order.