CWPA Alums Continue Presence on Day Five of FINA World Championships

SHANGHAI, China -- Betsey Armstrong (United States of America), Kirsten Hudson (New Zealand), Bronwen Knox (Australia), Sophie Smith (Australia), Barbara Amaro (Brazil), Marina Zablith (Brazil), Jemma Dendy-Young (South Africa), Ryan Castle (Kazakhstan) and Mark Koganov (Azerbaijan) continued the Collegiate Water Polo Association's (CWPA) showing on Day 5 of the FINA Women's World Championship in Shanghai, China.

In a day that saw perennial powers the United States of American, Australia, the Netherlands and Canada fall out of medal contention, the former/current players and coaches from the Collegiate Water Polo Association continued to star on the international stage.

For the United States, CWPA Hall of Fame member and former University of Michigan standout Armstrong recorded 12 saves in a 9-7 loss to Russia. Leading 6-2 early in the third quarter the United States were blitzed by five straight Russian goals to give up a lead they would never regain. Team USA now moves into the 5th through 8th place bracket where they will play Canada on Wednesday, July 27.

The loss brings an end to a streak of five straight World Championships in which the United States played for a medal. Included in that run were three Gold Medals and one Silver Medal. It also signals the end of titles in every major FINA Championship over the last two years. The tally included a World Championship Gold Medal, World Cup Gold Medal, and three FINA World League Super Final Gold Medals.

Two other former CWPA players will compete in the 5th-8th games on Wednesday as Australia, featuring former Hartwick players Knox and Smith, fell to Italy 14-12.  Knox scored once in the loss as she and the rest of the Australian contingent will face defending Olympic champion the Netherlands on Wednesday.

New Zealand suffered a similar fate as the Americans and Australians as former Harwick player Hudson scored twice, but Cuba reeled off five second half goals to take an 11-10 victory.  Hudson and New Zealand will face Spain on Wednesday in the 11th place game.

In other action, the Brazil-Kazakhstan game featured three Hartwick College connections as former Arizona State University club head coach and current Hartwick assistant varsity coach Castle led the Kazakhstan National Team to a 9-7 defeat of Brazil.  The victory claimed 13th place for Kazkhstan, and locked in the 14th position for Brazil. 

For Brazil,  Zablith scored twice, while fellow former Hawks' player Amaro did not find the back of the cage, in a game during which Kazakhstan never trailed.

In the 15th-16th place games, current Hartwick Hawks' player Dendy-Young scored once in a 6-5 victory for the Republic of South Africa against Uzbekistan.

Among the officials, CWPA referee Koganov, who is representing his native Republic of Azerbaijan as a neutral referee for the tournament, did not handle a game on Day 5 of the championship.

For complete results of the tournament, go to the FINA page by clicking here.

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