Sports

USA men fall to Serbia in opener of exhibition water polo series

 

Despite getting two goals from Stanford's Alex Bowen, the USA Men's Senior National Team lost to Serbia, 13-6, in front of a packed house at the University of the Pacific on Wednesday night.

Bowen and Josh Samuels each tallied twice while Jon Sibley posted 10 saves in net.

The series resumes on Thursday evening (7 p.m.) at UC Davis. The match will feature experimental rules in the first half, including a shorter course, five field players, and a smaller ball.

Serbia's Slobodan Nikic scored the first goal of the game that was quickly answered by the USA's Alex Obert. Both teams continued to answer each other's goals throughout the quarter. The U.S. had goals from Samuels and John Mann while Serbia had goals from Nikola Dedovic, Branislav Mitrovic, and Milan Aleksic.

Bowen scored the first goal in the second quarter for the USA. Serbia answered with three goals from Nikola Dedovic, Andrija Prlainovic, and Nikola Raden. Samuels scored his second goal of the game, but Serbia once again got the last goal of the quarter with a buzzer-beater by Stefan Mitrovic for an 8-5 lead at halftime.

Bowen scored early in the third quarter, but Serbia then expanded its lead with four unanswered goals for a 12-6 match.

The four-game exhibition series next moves to Cal on Saturday (3 p.m.) and wraps up Sunday at Stanford, also at 3 p.m.

— USA Water Polo/Palo Alto Online Sports

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