DUBAI, United Arab Emirates - The USA Men’s Senior National Team placed fifth at the FINA World League Super Final after defeating Canada, 14-11. Jack Kocur acted as head coach because Dejan Udovicic was serving a one-game suspension after receiving a red card yesterday, during their match against China.
Early in the first quarter, Canada was up 2-0, but Alex Bowen (Santee, CA/Stanford/Stanford) responded with USA’s first goal. Canada quickly followed with another goal, but John Mann (Newport Beach, CA/California/NYAC), who was heavily guarded, blasted the ball into the net. Josh Samuels (Villa Park, CA/UCLA/NYAC) tied the score with the final goal of the quarter.
At the start of the second quarter, Samuels added a goal from deep left, but Canada quickly answered back, tying the game at 4-4. Michael Rosenthal (Miami, FL/USC/NYAC) tallied a goal from the right, but Canada was able to tie the score at 5-5 before the halftime break.
Mann opened the second half with a goal from the center, but Canada returned the goal soon after. Nolan McConnell (Laguna Beach, CA/Long Beach State/SET) and Bowen quickly scored, Samuels following with his third goal of the game, taking the score to 9-6 at the end of the third quarter.
During the final quarter, Canada and USA exchanged goals back and forth. Samuels scored his fourth goal and Mann scored his third goal of the game and then Bruin Anthony Daboub (Newport Beach, CA/UCLA/Bruin) scored his first and Bret Bonanni (Huntington Beach, CA/Stanford/Stanford) scored twice, ending the game with a victory, 14-11.
Jack Kocur (USA) — Acting Head Coach
“Obviously a win is a win so we are happy with that. Canada is a good team so we always have strong fights and good battles out there. They have great two-meter men who complement our two-meter defenders. It was a slow finish but again we were happy to have the win.”
McQuin Baron (USA) — Goalkeeper
“I’m only 18 years old coming into the tournament. It’s an honor to play in the tournament, to play with all these Olympians. It’s an awesome experience. Today we had our ups and downs, but obviously getting the victory is what it is all about. Every tournament you go to you want to win a medal. Our average age is about 20 years old and we have lots to work on.”
5TH-PLACE GAME: USA vs. Canada
Referees: Hatem Gaber (EGY), Vojin Putnikovic (SRB)
Power Plays: USA: 6-for-9; CANADA: 4-for-11
Penalties: USA: 0-for-0; CANADA: 1-for-1
Goals: USA: Josh Samuels (4), John Mann (3), Bret Bonanni (2), Alex Bowen (2), Michael Rosenthal (1), Anthony Daboub (1), Nolan McConnell (1). CANADA: Nicolas Constantin-Bicari (3), Justin Boyd (3), Scott Robinson (2), Constantine Kudaba (1), Alec Taschereau (1), Zacchary Kappos (1).