Finally, Finishing the Job

Sept. 06, 2004
Sept. 06, 2004

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Sept. 6, 2004

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2004 Olympics

Finally, Finishing the Job

• No one tried to sugarcoat it: Bronze wasn't the medal the U.S. women's water polo team had come for. "We had some emotional moments," captain Heather Moody said of the day off between the team's heartbreaking 6-5 semifinal loss to eventual champion Italy and its third-place match against Australia. "We'd set our hearts so much on getting to the championship game."

This is an article from the Sept. 6, 2004 issue Original Layout

The world champion Americans were undone by a sudden inability to play with the lead. After jumping ahead of Canada 5-1 early in the tournament, they fell apart and lost 6--5. Italy, a team they'd dominated for the past year, came back from a 4-2 deficit and won on a goal with 2.2 seconds remaining. Against Australia, the U.S. blew a 5--1 lead before Ellen Estes scored her third goal of the game with 2:20 left to give the Americans a 6-5 victory. "It's nice to win bronze," said goaltender Jackie Frank (inset). "But it's not gold."

--E.M. Swift