Athlete: Maica Garcia Team: Spain National Team Sport: Water Polo Competition: 2009 World Aquatics Championships Opponent: Heather Petri, US National Team Result: L, 9-6 Location: Foro Italico - Rome, Lazio, Italy Date: 27-Jul-2009
Mix swimming and basketball with soccer. Toss in some wrestling for good measure. And you have a pretty good description of the exciting, fast-paced sport of water polo.
The U.S. women’s water polo team is ranked number one in the world, and is considered the favorite to bring home the gold medal at the Rio Olympics.
Since women’s water polo became an Olympic sport in 2000, the U.S. women have medaled every time, and they won their first gold in London four years ago.
The intense physicality of play “definitely makes for a really good sport to watch,” says center Kami Craig, 29. “It’s pretty exciting, watching people climb all over each other in the pool, and how we’re staying above water and keeping afloat, and then getting up big, taking shots.”