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U.S. women’s water polo team advances to Olympic semifinals

Makenzie Fischer scored three goals for Team USA on Tuesday in an Olympic quarterfinal victory.
Makenzie Fischer, shown playing against Canada in an exhibition match on May 19, scored three goals for Team USA on Tuesday in an Olympic quarterfinal victory.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

The U.S. Olympic women’s water polo team is two wins away from another gold medal.

Edison High School graduate Alys Williams and Laguna Beach alumna Makenzie Fischer each scored three goals as Team USA earned a 16-5 victory over Canada in an Olympic quarterfinal match Tuesday in Tokyo.

The United States, the two-time defending Olympic champion, will play the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) in a semifinal match. The match is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Thursday Tokyo time, which is 11:30 p.m. Wednesday Pacific time. It will be broadcast live on CNBC.

Team captain Maggie Steffens also scored three goals against Canada for Team USA, which improved to 4-1 in the tournament. Corona del Mar High product Maddie Musselman and Laguna Beach graduate Aria Fischer each scored two goals.

CdM graduate Stephania Haralabidis and Newport Harbor product Kaleigh Gilchrist each scored one goal for Team USA, which cruised against Canada after a strong start. The U.S. led 7-1 after the first quarter and 11-3 at halftime.

Edison product Tom Shields earns second swimming gold

Former Edison High and Cal swimming star Tom Shields earned a gold medal Sunday for his performance in the preliminaries of the 400-meter medley relay.

Shields swam the butterfly leg in the preliminaries in 51.33 seconds. He was replaced by Caeleb Dressel in the final, which the Americans won in a world-record time of 3 minutes, 26.78 seconds.

In Olympic swimming, athletes who only race in preliminaries also earn medals if their team medals at the finals.

This is Shields’ second gold medal, as he also earned gold in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 for his preliminaries performance in the 400 medley relay.

Costa Mesa’s April Ross advances to beach volleyball semifinals

April Ross of Costa Mesa and partner Alix Klineman have advanced to the Olympic women’s beach volleyball semifinals.

Ross and Klineman beat Laura Ludwig and Maggie Kozuch of Germany 21-19, 21-19 in a quarterfinal match Tuesday.

Ludwig was a defending Olympic champion. Ross, a former Newport Harbor High School and USC star, earned silver in 2012 and bronze in 2016.

Ross, 41, is the last remaining Olympic medalist in either the men’s or women’s draw.

She and Klineman, 31, will face Switzerland’s Joana Heidrich and Anouk Verge-Depre in the semifinals. The match will take place at 5 p.m. Pacific time on Wednesday, which is 9 a.m. Thursday local time in Japan.

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