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Canadian water polo teams take silver at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games

Photo Credit: Dave Holland/Team Canada  

(Lima, Peru – August 11, 2019) – It was a tough day at the pool for the Canadian Water Polo teams at the Lima 2019 Pan American Games. The Canadian women’s team fell 24-4 to a fierce American squad while the Canadian men lost their matchup 18-6 against the United States in the gold medal match. The Canadian women had booked their ticket for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics by the day before by reaching the final. The Canadian men will have another chance to qualify at the FINA Olympic Qualification tournament in March of 2020.

Canada 4 -24 United States (1-6, 2-7, 1-10, 0-1)

Jessica Gaudreault, Krystina Alogbo, Axelle Crevier, Emma Wright (1), Monika Eggens, Kelly McKee, Joelle Bekhazi (1), Shae Fournier (1), Hayley McKelvey, Kyra Christmas, Kindred Paul (1)


In the first final of the day, the United States came out strong in the first half, capitalizing on every opportunity to show a 13-3 lead at halftime. The Toronto 2015 defending Champions did not slow down in the second half taking advantage of a four-minute power play due to a red card and eleven goals to record the 24-4 win to capture the gold medal. Emma Wright, Joelle Bekhazi, Kindred Paul and Shae Fournier each scored singles for Canada.


« We had a very difficult game, and we lost our composure early in the game, and it slowed us down for the rest of the match. The Americans showed that they have greater game speed and we will need to improve on that in the coming year. With that being said, we reached our objective in this tournament, and we know we have a lot of work ahead of us before the Olympics.” Indicated Women’s national team Head Coach, David Paradelo.


“The game didn’t really go out the way we had planned, we had a slow start, and the US took advantage of the situation. We completed our objective that we set three years ago, but we would of like to end the tournament on a good note. In the next year, we will have to spend a lot of time together, working hard and playing together as a team. We have a lot of tournaments and training camps coming up, and that will give us plenty of opportunities to get to know each other in the water and play better.” added Jessica Gaudreault of the women’s national team.


The Canadian women’s team concludes the Lima 2019 Pan American Games with a silver medal and a berth for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. After a busy summer, the athletes will get some time to recover and come back in September to continue their preparation for next summer.

Canada 6 -18 United States (1-4, 1-6, 1-2, 3-6)

Milan Radenovic, Gaelan Patterson (1), Jérémie Blanchard (1), Nicolas Constantin-Bicari (1), Matthew Halajian, George Torakis, Jérémie Côté, Mark Spooner, Aleksa Gardijan (2), Aria Soleimanipak, Reuel D’Souza (1).

Canada was looking to secure its qualification for Tokyo 2020 with a win in the final match of the Lima 2019 water polo tournament. The United States also had its eyes on the prize. They took the lead early in the first quarter, converting their extra-man opportunities to show a 4-1 lead after eight minutes. The American squad scored four unanswered goals to open the second quarter. Nicolas Constantin-Bicari netted one at 1:52 to bring the score to 8-2, but USA added two more goals before the end of the first half (10-2).

Aleksa Gardijan tallied one on the Canadian power play at the beginning of the third quarter. In a much more defensive quarter, the US scored two more goals to bring the score to 10-3. Aleksa Gardijan, Gaelan Patterson and Reuel D’Souza each scored one in the final quarter, but it was too little too late for the Canadians. The US earned the 18-6 win to secure a spot at the 2020 Olympics.

“It was a tough game today. Even though we had prepared for it, the US started really strong, pressing high and pushing hard, which caught us off guards a little. Our offence struggled at the other end of the pool, and then we all made mistakes which adds up, and you get this kind of result. Overall, we had some really good games, and we showed that we could play quality water polo. Now, our goal will be to work under pressure and pull it out when it matters and when things are not going our way. We will need to improve as a group in the next months. We will have a lot of opportunities to train together. We need to take advantage of this time to improve our game and avoid making these small mistakes.” said Milan Radenovic of Canadian Men’s National Team.

This silver medal and second-place finish matched the best-ever result for the Canadian Men at the Pan American Games. The Lima 2019 Pan Ams was the only second time the Men’s National Team reached the final after making it at the Guadalajara 2011 Pan American Games. The Canadian Men will meet at the beginning of September to start their preparation for the 2020 Olympic Qualification Tournament to be held in March of 2020. Twelve teams will battle for the three spots available for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.



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