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Men's Water Polo: Yugoslavia Dunks USA -- September 25, 2000

By Eric Velazquez

Medal Contender Yugoslavia Handles U.S, 8-5

Sydney, Australia—A day after losing their tournament opener with Croatia yesterday, Team USA and head coach John Vargas had decided it was time to get back to basics. The U.S., considered to be one of the better swimming and counterattacking teams in the tournament, did just that on Sunday (Sept. 24), sticking marvelously to the game plan against Yugoslavia.
However, the heavily favored Yugoslavians were too much too handle, winning, 8-5.

“We played better today than we did yesterday, without a doubt,” said Vargas. “If we play with that kind of fight tomorrow, we’ll win.” Vargas also realizes that having taken on Croatia and Yugoslavia so early in
the tournament, the U.S. has a bit of an advantage heading through the rest of the bracket in preliminaries.

“Playing tough teams like Croatia and Yugoslavia helps us,” he said. “They’re both really good teams, and it gives us an edge heading into the rest of our games. I just think we need to keep bringing our aggressiveness
and our fight, and we’ll be fine.”


The U.S. was playing Yugoslavia for the first time since the UPS International Cup in Los Alamitos, Calif. Both meetings betweent the two teams were decided by one goal, with Yugoslavia winning both, including the tournament championship.


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