U.S. women win another international water polo title


Sacred Heart Prep grad KK Clark, Stanford senior Maggie Steffens and incoming Cardinal freshman Makenzie Fischer each scored a goal to help the United States women's national water polo team win the FINA World League Super Final championship Sunday, beating Australia, 8-7, in Shanghai, China.

Courtney Mathewson and Kaleigh Gilchrist each scored twice to lead the Americans, who won their 16th straight after opening the season with a loss to Italy.

KK Clark/USA water polo
Team USA scored twice in the first minute and opened a 6-2 advantage after the first period, holding on for the victory.

"I've never been so disappointed after a win," USA coach Adam Krikorian said. "Australia outplayed us for three quarters. Luckily we had a big lead and made some crucial defensive stops in the last minute of the game."

The U.S. did not convert any of its three power plays and did not attempt a penalty shot.

The Americans are not scheduled play together again until the FINA World Championships in Kazan, Russia, which begin July 26.

Stanford was named to represent the U.S. at the Pan American Games in Toronto, which begin July 7. National team members Kiley Neushul, Ashley Grossman and Steffens, who played on the Cardinal's NCAA championship team in May, are eligible to participate.

Men's water polo

Stanford senior Bret Bonanni scored three goals but host Italy beat the U.S. national team, 11-6, in the third game of a Friendly tournament in Rome on Sunday.

The tournament served as a final tune-up for the FINA World League Super Final, which opens June 23 in Bergamo, Italy. The U.S. meets Serbia, Australia and Italy during pool play.

Bonanni scored with 3:13 remaining in the second period to give the U.S. a 5-4 edge. Th Italians scored the next seven goals to take control.

Women's lacrosse

Lucy Dikeou, a rising senior at Stanford, was named to the U.S. women's national lacrosse team. She joins veteran national team goalie Liz Hogan, a Stanford assistant coach, on the 36-player squad.

Hogan, Dikeou and Card teammates Adrienne Anderson and Alexandra Crerend were among 108 invited to the three-day tryout camp Friday through Sunday at Johns Hopkins University.

Stanford head coach Amy Bokker is an assistant coach for the U.S. team, but could have no communication with her own players.

Dikeou is among nine who remain in college. She also is among 13 midfielders on the 2015-16 team, which will be preparing for the 2017 Federation of International Lacrosse Women's World Cup in Guildford, England.

Ultimately, 18 will represent the U.S. as the team goes for a third consecutive and eighth overall world title.

Dikeou was an IWLCA second-team All-America and All-West/Midwest Region first-team selection. She proved her versatility by leading Stanford in goals (48), points (63), groundballs (34), draw controls (64), caused turnovers (24), and free-position goals (13.).

She also reached per game averages in goals, assists, points, groundballs, draw controls, caused turnovers, and shooting percentage that were unmatched across the board by any player in the country.

Women's volleyball

Stanford senior Inky Ajanaku had 14 points, including 11 kills, and Cardinal grad Kristin (Richards) Hildebrand added 15 points, with 12 kills as the U.S. senior national team downed Columbia, 25-21, 25-9, 23-25, 25-16, Sunday in the Women's Pan American Cup in Lima, Peru.

Stanford grad Alix Klineman added 10 points, including four service aces, while Cardinal grad Cassidy Lichtman added a pair of points for the Americans, who play Costa Rica on Monday.

Men's rugby

East Palo Alto resident Folau Niua helped the U.S. national rugby qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics, as the Men's Sevens won the NACRA Sevens Championships at MedPark in Cary, N.C. on Sunday.

The Americans, who outscored their opponents by a 229-10 margin, beat the Cayman Islands, 64-0, in the semifinal and topped Canada, 21-5, in the final.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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