Worlds Water Polo: Amanda Longan, U.S. Defense Slow Australia

Amanda Longan; Photo Courtesy: Catharyn Hayne

Editorial content for the 2023 World Aquatics Championships is sponsored by FINIS, a longtime partner of Swimming World and leading innovator of suits, goggles and equipment.


Worlds Water Polo: Amanda Longan, U.S. Defense Slow Australia

The United States women’s water polo team has one foot in the knockout round at the 2023 World Championships thanks to a 9-5 win over Australia on Tuesday, the second day of competition in Fukuoka, Japan.

Amanda Longan stood tall in goal for the U.S. with 13 saves. She and the American defense held the Aussies to two goals over the final three quarters in a suffocating performance. It gives the reigning World and Olympic champion six points from two games in Group A, with a match against France looming.

Australia scored three times in the first quarter, trailing 5-3 after eight minutes. But the Aussies couldn’t climb back in the game despite 31 shots. Tara Prentice led the way for the U.S. offense with two goals at the center forward spot. Jenna Flynn and Ryann Neushul also scored twice each.

Alice Williams led Australia with a hat trick.

France needed a 5-2 run in the fourth quarter to survive China, 12-11. Orsolya Hertzka scored both of her goals in the fourth quarter, and Juliette Dhalluin added four goals.

Tuesday was largely a day of blowouts on the women’s side. The Netherlands routed Kazakhstan, 30-2, leading 10-0 after one quarter. Simone van de Kraats led the way with eight goals on nine shots, and Maxine Schaap added five goals. Spain, Italy and Greece topped 20 goals in comfortable victories.

Japan played another high-scoring affair in what is turning out to be a thrilling Group D, which opened on Day 1 with a pair of one-goal games. In a game with 76 shots and 11 power-play goals, Hungary outlasted the host nation, 26-21. Geraldine Mahieu scored five times on five shots, and Dorottya Szilagyi, Vanda Valyi and Greta Gurisatti tallied four times each. Japan was led by seven goals from Yumi Arima.

Canada topped New Zealand, 13-11, in the other Group D game. The Canadians led 7-4 after one quarter and blanked the Kiwis in the third, that 11-7 edge after three enough to withstand a late charge by New Zealand. Jessica Gaudreault made 11 saves for the Canadians.

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