2000 Holiday Cup – Day Four Results – July 7, 2000
U.S. Steamrolls Kazakhstan, 13-2
Win Secures Berth in Gold Medal Game
Maybe it's not Olympic time yet, but with its fourth consecutive win on Friday night in the Holiday Cup against Kazakhstan, the USA women's water polo team is starting to raise a few eyebrows.
The U.S., anchored by a five-goal night from Ellen Estes, knocked off Kazakhstan, 13-2, in pool play.
Estes did most of her damage early on for the U.S., netting three goals in the first period. Prior to Friday, Estes had only scored once in three games.
Olympic alternate Rachel Scott also got in on the offensive melee, scoring three goals of her own. The hard-shooting southpaw picked up goals in each period after the first. Tournament scoring leader Coralie Simmons also had another multi-goal game, this time picking up two.
U.S. goalkeeper Nicolle Payne, who stopped 12 shots in her last outing versus gold medal-favorite Australia, canned six would-be shooters, giving
her 18 on the week.
With the win, Team USA assures itself an appearance in Sunday's first-place game at 7:00 p.m. at the U.S. Water Polo National Aquatic Center
in Los Alamitos.
Johanne Begin's goal with 55 seconds remaining in regulation broke a 5-5 tie and propelled Canada past Australia, 6-5, in pool play of the Holiday Cup.
Canada's win sent Australia into sole possession of second place.
Canada led 4-3 headed into the fourth quarter, but Australia quickly tied it at 4-4. Begin, however, sent the Canadians up 5-4 with 4:16 to play.
Australia again showed its mettle, and tied the game at 5-5 with 2:40 left on a goal by Yvette Higgins. But Begin's backbreaker in the game's final minute
salvaged the hard earned win for Canada.
Australia falls to 2-2 in the tournament, while Canada ups its record to 3-1.
Russia played world champion Netherlands to a 6-6 tie in the second quarter but lost, 11-9, to go to 1-3 in the tournament.
The Netherlands got a little help from Karen Kuipers, who busted out for five goals on the day, a tournament high. Kuipers' penalty shot with 3:32 to
play in the third quarter put Netherlands up 8-6. Russia managed to convert on only two of its nine man-advantage opportunities in the loss.