USA Women’s Water Polo Wins Two Over China To Open Homestand

maggie-steffens-usa-water-polo
Photo Courtesy: Jared Gray, USA Water Polo
The USA Women’s National Team took their second straight win over China in decisive fashion, earning a 14-2 win at the Woollett Aquatics Center in Irvine. The win was a marked improvement after a tight 13-9 win on Friday night in Torrance. Aria Fischer (Laguna Beach, CA/Stanford/SET) powered the offense with four goals while Amanda Longan (Moorpark, CA/USC/Santa Barbara 805) and Gabby Stone (La Jolla, CA/Stanford/San Diego Shores) combined for eight saves in net.

The United States surged to a 4-0 lead in the first quarter on the strength of two Kiley Neushul penalty shot scores (Isla Vista, CA/Stanford/NYAC). They kept up the intensity in the second quarter as they tacked on six more unanswered goals behind two goals from Maggie Steffens (Danville, CA/Stanford/NYAC) in the final moments of the half. The offensive output slowed in the second half as Team USA managed just two goals in the third quarter, while China got on the board to make it 12-1 after three.

Aria Fischer scored a goal in each quarter of the match and delivered her final tally in the fourth on a dish from her sister Makenzie Fischer (Laguna Beach, CA/Stanford/SET). Team USA was perfect on the advantage going 6/6 on power plays and 2/3 on penalties with China going 0/6 on power plays and 1/1 on penalties.

Notes: The USA Women’s National Team was named FINA Women’s Water Polo Team of the Year for the fourth straight year. The team was honored this weekend in China at the FINA Aquatics Gala. All games in this exhibition series are being playing under new rules approved by FINA earlier this month. To learn more about the new rules, click here.

Scoring
USA 12 (4, 6, 2, 2) A. Fischer 4, M. Steffens 2, K. Neushul 2, J. Raney 2, M. Fischer 1, B. Games 1, P. Hauschild 1, J. Neushul 1
CHN 2 (0, 0, 1, 1) Lu Yiwen 1, Zhang Danyi 1
Saves – USA – A. Longan 5, G. Stone 3 – CHN – Lin Peng 2, Shen Yineng 2
6×5 – USA – 6/6 – CHN – 0/0
Penalties – USA – 2/3 – CHN – 1/1
Officials: Jen McCall, Tiffany Spiritosanto

12/14 – USA 13 China 9 – Torrance, CA

Torrance, CA – December 14 – In front of a capacity crowd at Torrance Aquatic Center the USA Women’s National Team opened up their exhibition series with a 13-9 victory over China. Jamie Neushul (Goleta, CA/Stanford/SB 805) led the way with three goals for Team USA. Gabby Stone (La Jolla, CA/Stanford/NYAC) and Ashleigh Johnson (Miami, FL/Princeton/NYAC) split time in the cage.

A full replay of the match is available by clicking here.

It was China who jumped to a 1-0 lead right off the start, but Team USA stormed back to score the next four goals as they took a 4-1 lead at the end of the first quarter. China responded with two early goals to pull within one, but Team USA responded with back to back goals to push their lead up to 6-3. The teams then exchanged goals with Melissa Seidemann (Walnut Creek, CA/Stanford/NYAC) firing home right before the end of the period to put Team USA up 7-4 at halftime.

The third quarter belonged to China as they used stifling defense to hold Team USA to one goal to get within 8-7 at the end of the third quarter. Team USA regrouped at the intermission and came out firing in the fourth quarter as they scored three straight goals to take an 11-7 advantage. They continued to pour it on as Jordan Raney (Manhattan Beach, CA/Stanford/NYAC) scored to put Team USA up by five. China would get one back with three seconds left as Team USA won 13-9.

Team USA went 3/6 on power plays and 0/1 on penalties while China was 1/8 on power plays and 1/1 on penalties.

Scoring
USA 13 (4, 3, 1, 5)
CHN 9 (1, 3, 3, 2)
USA: J. Neushul 3, M. Seidemann 2, S. Haralabidis 2, J. Raney 1, R. Fattal 1, M. Steffens 1, K. Gilchrist 1, A. Williams 1, P. Hauschild 1,
CHN: Z. Danyi 2, N. Sanfeng 2, L. Yiwen 1, Z. Cong 1, C. Xiao 1, Z. Jing 1, W. Xinyan 1
Saves – USA – G. Stone 1, A. Johnson 0 – CHN – S. Yineng 4
6-on-5 – USA – 3/6 – CHN – 1/8
Penalties – USA 0/1 – CHN – 1/1
Referees – Sergio Macias and Hadi Farid