MELBOURNE, Australia -- Brenda Villa scored four goals to
lead the United States past Spain 10-6 on Tuesday and into the
women's water polo world championship semifinals.
The Americans got off to a slow start, trailing Spain 3-1 after
the first quarter before tying the score at 3 at the halfway mark.
From then on it was all the United States.
"Spain did a good job. We haven't played a match for a while
and it just took us a while to get going. The third period was good
though and even the second we showed a bit,'' said U.S. coach Guy
Lauren Wenger scored two goals for the United States, while
Natalie Golda, Heather Petri, Alison Gregorka and Kameryn Craig had
Blanca Gil Sorli had all six goals for Spain.
The United States faces its toughest test in the semifinals
Thursday when it takes on defending champion Hungary, an 11-9
quarterfinal winner over Canada.
"Our games are pretty similar," Villa said of the Hungarian
women. "We are both playing a tight pressing defense and we have
both got great shooters. In the end, I think it will come down to
the extra player situations."
In other quarterfinals, Russia edged Greece 10-9 and will next
face Australia, a 12-8 winner over Italy.
The Australian women got revenge after their male counterparts
lost to Italy in the final seconds of overtime Monday to miss out
on a quarterfinals spot.
Australia will launch an official complaint after claiming
Italy's Silvia Bosurgi bit Australian Kate Gynther on the forearm
and broke the skin in the final quarter of their match.
"They just fall over the top and they bite, there's three girls
in the team who do it all the time," Australia coach Greg