STANFORD, Calif.- The U.S. Women's Water Polo Olympic Team defeated Hungary 17-8 on Monday night at the Avery Aquatic Center, making "Lunging 2 London" an overwhelming success while showcasing strong efforts from five current and former Stanford standouts.
Melissa Seidemann '13 and Maggie Steffens '16 both registered hat tricks in the victory while Annika Dries '14 also added a goal as Team USA took control early and held on for the win in front of a sold-out crowd of 3,042.
Courtney Mathewson and Lauren Wegner added three goals apiece. Meanwhile, Betsey Armstrong turned in a solid performance in net with six saves.
The match was high scoring from the beginning, as Wenger got things started early with a goal about two minutes in for a 1-0 lead. Hungary answered to tie the game, but the United States countered with three straight goals, one from Steffens and two from Mathewson. Hungary had a reply of their own with back to back goals to draw within 4-3, with 1:13 left in the period. Seidemann hit from deep for the next USA goal, and then Hungary scored to close out the period and it was a 5-4 lead for Team USA after one.
Team USA came out firing in the second hitting on two straight goals for a 7-4 lead with 6:01 left in the half. Hungary scored next to make it 7-5 but the United States responded with goals from Mathewson and Seidemann for a 9-5 lead with 2:16 left in the period. Hungary tacked on a late score in the period and it was 9-6 at halftime.
In the second half, the United States offense continued to produce while their defense began to lock down the Hungarians. The third period saw Team USA keep the Hungarians from scoring while adding four goals. Maggie Steffens scored the first two of the period, followed by a redirect from Wenger, and then an outside shot from Seidemann. That put the United States up 13-6 at the end of the third quarter.
Elsie Windes opened the scoring in the fourth with a shot from in close for a 14-6 lead. Hungary tried to rally with another goal closing to within 14-7, but it was too little, too late. Heather Petri hit a lob from outside, Kami Craig fired in a backhand, and Dries buried one from the weakside for a 17-7 lead with 2:30 left. Hungary would score a late goal that did not factor in the decision.
Team USA went 4-6 on power plays and 1-1 on penalties while Hungary was 3-11 on power plays and 0-1 on penalties.
USA: 5-4-4-4 = 17 Hungary: 4-2-0-2 = 8
USA Goal Scorers: M. Seidemann 3, M. Steffens 3, C. Mathewson 3, L. Wenger 3, K. Craig 2, A. Dries 1, H. Petri 1, E. Windes 1. USA Saves: B. Armstrong 6.