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Hungary Tops U.S. in Women’s Water Polo

July 29, 2005

MONTREAL (AP) _ Eszter Tomaskovics scored the go-ahead goal in the first overtime and Hungary went on to defeat the United States 10-7 for the gold medal in women’s water polo at the World Swimming Championships.

Trailing 7-3 at halftime, the Americans rallied with four consecutive goals to force overtime.

But the Hungarians dominated both three-minute overtimes, with goalie Patricia Horvath making three key saves. The Americans also hit the post three times, including twice by Natalie Golda.

After Hungary scored to take a 10-7 lead, Horvath made her best save, leaping up with her right arm extended and blocking away Golda’s shot.

Ericka Lorenz, Kelly Rulon and Moriah Van Norman each scored two goals for the United States, the world champions in 2003 and bronze medalists at the Athens Olympics.

Tomaskovics led Hungary with three goals; her last one gave the Hungarians an 8-7 lead with 1:57 remaining in the first overtime.

Agnes Valkai and Rita Dravucz had Hungary’s other overtime goals.

The Americans took 10 more shots than Hungary in the game. They reached the championship match under first-year coach Heather Moody, a two-time Olympian.

In the bronze-medal game, Ann Dow scored four goals in the final game of her career, helping Canada defeat Russia 8-3.

Dow scored Canada’s first two goals before Russia tied the game at 2 in the second quarter.

Then Dow scored twice in a row, and Tara Campbell, Susan Gardiner and Johanne Begin added goals to give Canada a 7-3 lead heading into the final seven minutes.

Tears streamed down Dow’s face after the final horn sounded, when she realized her 14 years on Canada’s national team had ended. Begin and Cora Campbell also retired.

``A lot of emotions, happy and sadness at the same time,″ Dow said. ``I’m going to savor the moment.″

Natalia Shepelina, Sofya Konukh and Elena Smurova scored one goal apiece for Russia.

Canadian goalie Rachel Riddel made 18 saves one game after being removed in the fourth quarter of a semifinal loss to Hungary.

The Russians took 13 more shots than Canada.

``We really wanted to win,″ Riddel said. ``We came out and played our hardest. I feel honored to play with these girls. They played excellent defense and they’re what made me look good.″

Canadian fans rocked the venue, cheering on the home team and hoisting maple leaf flags and banners.

``The crowd was incredible,″ coach Patrick Oaten said. ``The future for this sport is incredible in this country. People don’t know how good this country can be.″

Canada was coming off a seventh-place finish at the Athens Olympics.

Greece took fifth place with a 10-8 victory over Australia.

Antigoni Roumpesi scored four goals for Greece, while Evangelia Moraitidou and Aikaterini Oikonomopoulou added two apiece.

Olympic champion Italy defeated Germany 12-8 in the seventh-place game, getting four goals from Tania Di Mario. Ariane Rump scored four times to lead Germany.

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