U.S. junior water polo teams making waves in Clearwater


Corona del Mar junior Tanner Pulice scored five goals and the U.S. junior men's national water polo team beat Argentina, 16-5, on Wednesday at the UANA Junior Pan American Championship in Clearwater, Fla.

"Playing in the country is awesome and the fans have been amazing," Pulice told USA Water Polo. "I've had a good time so far."

Alex Tsotadze.
Ethan Parrish, the younger brother of Stanford senior Blake Parrish, was one of four players to each add a pair of goals.

"Our counter attack was amazing," Pulice said. "We knew we could out-swim these guys. That's what led us to the win."

Pulice scored the game's first two goals and after Argentina came back to take a 3-2 lead, it was all Team USA, which eventually built an 11-3 edge going into the fourth quarter.

The U.S. defense, which included Sacred Heart Prep grad Alex Tsotadze, and goalie Kent Emden, who recorded 13 saves, clamped down on the Argentines, keeping off the scoreboard for over 21 minutes spanning the final 2:50 of the first quarter to the first 2:48 of the fourth quarter.

The U.S. was 3 of 8 on the power play while limiting Argentina to 1 of 4. The Americans also converted 3 of 4 penalty shots while Argentina did not attempt one.

The Americans, who play Puerto Rico on Thursday at 1:30 p.m., are tied at the top of Group A, each with 1-0-1 records through two days, followed by Argentina (1-1) and Puerto Rico (0-2).

In Group B, it's Canada (2-0), Peru (1-1), Colombia (1-1) and Barbados (0-2).

Women's water polo

The USA women's junior national team began pool play at the UANA Junior Pan American Championships with a 16-4 victory over Puerto Rico on Wednesday.

Jenna Flynn led Team USA with three goals in the victory. Itzahiana Baca and Emily Blackwell shared time in the cage with Baca recording 11 saves and Blackwell notching six.

The U.S. plays Brazil on Thursday morning.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/USA water polo

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