WATER POLO: USA Men & Women Top Canada To Open FINA World Cup Qualification 1-0

The USA Men’s Senior National Team opened the FINA World Cup Qualification with an 11-6 victory over Canada earlier today at the Santa Ana YMCA. The victory puts Team USA ahead 1-0 in the best of three series with the second game set for tomorrow at 10:30am pt also at the Santa Ana YMCA. In today’s victory the United States used a balanced attack including two goals apiece from Josh Samuels (Villa Park, CA/UCLA/NYAC), Alex Bowen (Santee, CA/Stanford/Stanford) and Danny McClintick (Agoura Hills, CA/UCLA/Bruin) to lead the offense. Andy Stevens (Villa Park, CA/LMU/NYAC) went the distance in net to secure the victory.

The match was close in the first period with each side trading goals. McClintick, Bowen, and Samuels all scored and after one quarter the game was even at 3-3. The second period saw the United States use their center game with Lucas Reynolds (Newport Beach, CA/UCLA/Bruin) and Alex Obert (Stockton, CA/Pacific/Sac Polo) each scoring in close to build a 5-4 lead at halftime.

Team USA kept up the attack in the third period, holding a two goal lead to start the period and to finish it. Jackson Kimbell (Long Beach, CA/Stanford/) scored with just 26 seconds left to build an 8-6 lead going to the fourth. The United States blew the game open in the fourth, scoring three straight goals while keeping Canada scoreless. Bret Bonanni (Huntington Beach, CA/Stanford/Stanford) scored on a power play, John Mann (Newport Beach, CA/California/NYAC) hit on a counter attack, and Samuels finished things off with his second goal for an 11-6 lead.

The United States went 6/8 on power plays and did not attempt a penalty shot while Canada was 2/11 on the power play and 1/1 on penalty shots. For complete FINA World Cup qualification schedule and results, click here. Admission to all matches at the qualification is free.

Scoring – Scoresheet
USA 11 (3, 2, 3, 3) D. McClintick 2, J. Samuels 2, A. Bowen 2, L. Reynolds 1, A. Obert 1, J. Kimbell 1, B. Bonanni 1, J. Mann 1
CAN 6 (3, 1, 2, 0)
6×5 – USA 6/8 – CAN 2/11
Penalties – USA 0/0 – CAN 1/1

USA Women 11 Canada 4

Santa Ana, CA – December 17 – The USA Women’s Senior National Team opened the FINA World Cup Qualification with an 11-4 victory over Canada. Team USA is now just one victory away from clinching a berth in next summer’s World Cup. Team USA and Canada will meet on Wednesday evening at 7:30pm pt again at Foothill High School. In tonight’s victory, the United States never trailed as Maggie Steffens (Danville, CA/Stanford/Diablo) and Melissa Seidemann (Walnut Creek, CA/Stanford/Stanford) each scored three goals to lead the offense. Betsey Armstrong (Ann Arbor, MI/Michigan/NYAC) did the job in net, posting 11 saves in the victory. For complete World Cup qualification information, click here.

Steffens got thing started in the first, scoring two straight goals to build an early 2-0 lead. The United States offense kept rolling with Seidemann and Lolo Silver (Long Beach, CA/Stanford/NYAC) scoring later in the period to take a 4-0 advantage to the second period. Steffens scored to open the second period for a 5-0 lead but Canada stopped the run with a score with 5:45 left in the first half.

Kami Craig (Santa Barbara, CA/USC/SBWPF) and Seidemann followed with goals and the USA lead quickly ballooned to six at 7-1. Canada answered with a goal to close within 7-2 only to see Rachel Fattal (Seal Beach, CA/UCLA/SOCAL) capitalize on two quick passes for a score and an 8-2 halftime lead.

In a relatively quiet third period Canada would score two of the three goals in the quarter to trail 9-4 going to the fourth. After a scoreless first half of the fourth period the United States came through with two late goals in the fourth to seal the match. Seidemann and Silver scored to build the 11-4 final margin.

Team USA went 5/5 on power plays while Canada was 2/8, neither team attempted a penalty shot.

Scoring – Scoresheet
USA 11 (4, 4, 1, 2) M. Steffens 3, M. Seidemann 3, K. Craig 2, L. Silver 2, R. Fattal 1
CAN 4 (0, 2, 2, 0)
Saves – USA – B. Armstrong 11
6×5 – USA – 5/5 – CAN 2/8

This release was provided to SwimSwam courtesy of USA Water Polo.

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There hasn’t been any innovation in polo in about 50 years. This won’t be a main stream sport until they get a handle on the fouls relative to the flow of play. The ref is blowing that darn whistle non stop during a match. At least every 15 seconds, much more than a basketball game. Even folks within the water polo community can’t figure out half the time what any particular whistle was for. Do you expect anyone else to watch it??????????

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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