Back Bay stars help Team USA women’s water polo earn another world championship

U.S. women's water polo national team member Maddie Musselman.
U.S. women’s water polo national team member Maddie Musselman, shown competing in 2021, helped Team USA win another world title on Friday.
(File Photo)

The U.S. women’s water polo national team has been dominant by any measure over the last decade.

Another world championship Friday only strengthened that historic resume.

Corona del Mar High alumna Maddie Musselman scored a goal in the title match as Team USA earned gold at the 2024 World Aquatics World Championships in Qatar with an 8-7 win over Hungary.

It was the eighth world championship in team history, by far the most of any program in men’s or women’s water polo. Team USA’s women also won in 2003, 2007, 2009, 2015, 2017, 2019 and 2022 (the world championships are usually played every two years).


Los Alamitos native Rachel Fattal scored three goals in the final, while Maggie Steffens added two. Newport Harbor alumna Kaleigh Gilchrist also contributed for Team USA.

Steffens, Fattal and Musselman all earned their fifth world championship, and it’s the sixth for head coach Adam Krikorian.

After going undefeated in group play, Team USA beat Australia 10-9 in the quarterfinals — Musselman leading with three goals — and topped Spain 11-9 in the semifinals.

Team USA had already qualified for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, where the Americans will attempt to win their fourth straight gold medal.