U.S. Water Polo Team Defeats Romania, 7-4

NEWPORT BEACH, CALIF. August 28. Team USA defeated Romania in pre-Olympic competition, 7-4, on Sunday before a crowd of 366 at Newport Harbor High School.

The U.S. scoring started out, appropriately enough, with a goal by Chris Humbert from two-meters early in the first quarter of play. A stop by Dan Hackett (Irvine, CA) on Romania’s ensuing possession led to a goal by Chris Oeding (Newport Beach, CA) on the counterattack to give USA a 2-0 lead. Tony Azevedo (Long Beach, CA) closed out the first quarter scoring, blasting one past goalkeeper Gelu Lisac with 1:39 to go.

USA’s Wolf Wigo (New York, NY) blasted a perimeter shot goalward that ricocheted off of Lisac and into the net to extend the lead to 4-0. Team USA would again play pinball with Lisac on its next possession. Humbert’s shot from set went bar-down and off of Lesac’s back, for a 5-0 U.S. lead.

The Romanians finally cracked the score column with 2:48 remaining in the second quarter on a left handed turn-around by two-meter man Cosmin Radu, making the score 5-1 in favor of the U.S.

Romania held the U.S. scoreless in the third, and brought the score to 5-2 with Radu’s second goal of the day. Robert Lynn (Long Beach, CA) got into the act early in the fourth quarter, netting a goal to give the U.S. a 6-2 advantage.

On Romania’s next trip down on offense, team captain Vlad Hagiu drew a penalty on USA’s Sean Kern (Honolulu, HI) and connected on the ensuing throw, one of his two goals on the day. Hagiu’s second goal at the 3:12 mark brought Romania to within striking distance at 6-4, but the U.S. defense held tight for the duration, choking off the rally.

Kyle Kopp (Long Beach, CA) added an insurance goal with 19 seconds left in the game on a lob pass from Wigo. USA goalkeeper Dan Hackett finished with nine saves.

The U.S. will take on Romania again this Thursday (Aug. 31) in a 7:15 p.m. game at El Toro High School. Prior to the men’s game at 6:15 p.m, the USA women will be taking to the water for an intersquad game.

1 2 3 4 — F
USA 3 2 0 2 — 7
Romania 0 1 1 2 — 4

USA: Humbert 2, Azevedo 1, Oeding 1, Kopp 1, Lynn 1, Wigo 1
Romania: Radu 2, Hagiu 2

USA: Hackett 9
Romania: Lisac 4, Fratila 6

Man Advantages:
USA: 0 for 5
Romania: 0 for 4

Attendance: 366

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