Courtesy: USA Water Polo
IRVINE, Calif. – USA Men’s National Team Head Coach Dejan Udovicic has announced the roster for the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru this August 4-10. 11 athletes were selected for competition marking the first time Team USA has fielded a reduced roster since the announcement of a roster size reduction for the 2020 Olympic Games. Previously a 13-athlete roster, the reduction was announced following the increase of eight teams to ten teams in women’s Olympic competition. The winner of the 2019 Pan American Games will earn a berth to the 2020 Olympic Games.
Team captain and four-time Olympian Jesse Smith (Coronado, CA/Pepperdine/NYAC) guides Team USA into action in pursuit of his USA Water Polo record-tying fifth Olympic Games. He is joined by fellow Rio Olympians Alex Bowen (Santee, CA/Stanford/NYAC), Alex Obert (Loomis, CA/Pacific/NYAC), Luca Cupido (Santa Margherita Ligure, Italy/California/Olympic Club) and Ben Hallock (Westlake Village, CA/Stanford/LA Premier).
In an effort to defend their Pan Am Games title and add their 13th overall gold medal, Team USA is joined by a mix of international club veterans and rising stars including: Johnny Hooper (Los Angeles, CA/California/LA Premier), Alex Wolf (Huntington Beach, CA/UCLA/Bruin), Hannes Daube (Long Beach, CA/USC/Trojan), Max Irving (Long Beach, CA/UCLA/NYAC), Chancellor Ramirez (Pasadena, CA/UCLA/NYAC) and Marko Vavic (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA/USC/Trojan).
Team USA will open play in Peru against Cuba on August 4. Slotted in Group A, Team USA will also meet Canada and Puerto Rico in group play that concludes on August 6. A champion will be crowned on August 10.
Prior to the Pan American Games, Team USA will take part in the FINA World Championships this July 13-28 in Gwangju, South Korea. This event will also serve as a qualification opportunity for the 2020 Olympic Games with the top two teams earning spots in Tokyo next summer.
2019 Pan American Games USA Men’s National Team Roster
Alex Wolf (Huntington Beach, CA/UCLA/Bruin)
Ben Hallock (Westlake Village, CA/Stanford/LA Premier)
Luca Cupido (Santa Margherita, Italy/California/Olympic Club)
Hannes Daube (Long Beach, CA/USC/North Irvine WPC)
Alex Bowen (Santee, CA/Stanford/NYAC)
Alex Obert (Loomis, CA/Pacific/NYAC)
Jesse Smith (Coronado, CA/Pepperdine/NYAC)
Chancellor Ramirez (Pasadena, CA/UCLA/NYAC)
Max Irving (Long Beach, CA/UCLA/NYAC)
Johnny Hooper (Los Angeles, CA/California/LA Premier)
Marko Vavic (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA/USC/Trojan)
Head Coach: Dejan Udovicic
Asst. Coach: Alex Rodriguez and Gavin Arroyo
Team Manager: Lori Verdegaal
2019 Pan American Games Men’s Competition Schedule
August 4 vs Cuba 1pm pt
August 5 vs Canada 1pm pt
August 6 vs Puerto Rico 4pm pt
August 7 TBD
August 8 TBD
August 9 TBD
August 10 TBD (Finals)