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Johnson Helps USA Water Polo Capture Gold at 2014 Kirishi Cup

Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications                                                                      Release: 07/07/2014
Courtesy: Jon Temple
Ashleigh Johnson made 37 saves in three games for Team USA.
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USA SENIOR NATIONAL WATER POLO TEAM

PRINCETON, N.J. – Ashleigh Johnson of the Princeton University water polo program recently wrapped up a stint with the women’s senior national team, helping Team USA win gold at the 2014 Kirishi Cup.

Just the second Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) goalie to ever make the national team roster, Johnson split time in net with Sami Hill, seeing time in three of the team’s five games.

After Team USA opened the tournament with a 13-10 win over Hungary, Johnson helped spearhead a 10-6 victory over host Russia, finishing with 14 saves. Trailing 1-0 in the early going, the Americans scored four of the game’s next five goals, taking a 4-2 halftime lead before blowing the contest open in the third quarter.

With Hill making 14 stops in an 11-4 triumph over Italy, the Red, White & Blue once again turned to Johnson, who responded with a record 17 saves in a 7-7 draw with Spain. Trailing 6-4 after three periods, Team USA netted three of the contest's final four goals to salvage a tie, thanks in part to Johnson’s stellar day in net.

Squaring off against the Netherlands in the final, Johnson posted six first half saves and allowed just one goal before giving way to Hill, who managed to record six stops of her own in a narrow 6-5 championship-clinching win. Finishing with 37 saves in her three appearances, Johnson garnered Player of the Tournament honors for her efforts.

A rising junior for the Tigers, Johnson has helped Princeton to a pair of CWPA Southern Division titles. Last season, she logged 885:35 minutes in net, posting a 28-2 overall record with a .704 save percentage, 43 steals and seven assists. As a freshman she went 28-6 in 32 starts with a .668 save percentage, 22 assists and 47 steals.

2014 KIRISHI CUP RESULTS
July 1 – USA 13, Hungary 10
July 2 – USA 10, Russia 6
July 3 – USA 11, Italy 4
July 4 – USA 7, Spain 7
July 5 – USA 6, Netherlands 5

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