Winning Day For Trojan Men's Water Polo Olympians
July 31, 2012
It was a winning day for USC's men's water polo Olympians in London today (Aug. 31). Australian goalie and USC grad Joel Dennerley ruled the cage for the Aussies in their group play win over Kazakhstan, and fellow grad Shea Buckner joined his United States teammates for a win over Romania.
2011 USC grad and four-time NCAA champion Joel Dennerley anchored his Australian team to a strong 7-4 win over Kazakhstan early this morning, California time. After pinning up 13 saves in his Olympic debut two days ago, Dennerley settled in for nine saves today (July 31) against the Kazakhs, while allowing just four goals in the Olympic victory. Incoming Trojan James Clark serves as a backup goalie to four-time All-American Dennerley, who played the entire game today for the Aussies. Clark and Dennerley cap up next for Australia in a group play match against Spain on Aug. 2 at 2 a.m. PT.
A four-time national champion and the recipient of the 2011-12 Peter J. Cutino Award as the nation's top collegiate player in his senior season at USC, goalie Joel Dennerley is playing in his first Olympic Games. While anchoring USC's run to a historic four straight NCAA titles, Dennerley emerged as the Trojans' all-time leader in career saves. He is the first-ever goalie to win the Cutino Award on the men's side, and also claimed back-to-back honors as the MPSF Player of the Year -- also a first for a goalie. For his native Australia, Dennerley was called up to compete in the 2010 FINA World Cup and 2011 FINA World Championships and was recently named Australia Water Polo Inc.'s Male Player of the Year.
The last game of the day featured another Trojan national champion in two-time champ Shea Buckner, who is also making his Olympic debut. A member of Team USA, Buckner helped the United States drive to a second win in group play, beating Romania 10-8 today. Buckner and the Americans next face host Great Britain in a 10:20 a.m. PT game on Aug. 2
A 2008 and 2009 NCAA Champion and a three-time All-American at USC, Shea Buckner is making his Olympic debut this year in London. His call-up to Team USA has taken him most recently to international appearances at the 2011 and 2012 FINA World League Super Finals as he now prepares to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games. Buckner played three seasons at USC, helping anchor the Trojans' undefeated finish in 2008, which kick-started USC's historic run to four consecutive national championships.
Follow all the Trojan Olympians in their quests for Olympic gold at www.usctrojans.com/london2012