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U.S. women's water polo team loses first Olympic match since 2008

Yahoo Sports US logo Yahoo Sports US 7/28/2021 Jack Baer

The biggest U.S. upset at the Olympics is no longer Katie Ledecky or the women's gymnastics team.

The U.S. women's water polo team, quite possibly the most dominant team in the world regardless of sport, lost to Hungary in a 10-9 thriller to suffer their first Olympic loss since 2008. The team fell to 2-1 in group play, but is still guaranteed a spot in bracket play.

The Americans entered the fourth quarter with an 8-6 lead, but their usually dominant offense — which had scored 37 goals in their first two games — went dormant as Hungary scored four goals against goalkeeper Ashleigh Johnson.

As a team, the U.S. shot 9-of-31 and was only 4-of-11 on shots with an extra player.

The good news for the U.S. is that the loss likely won't harm them at all — they remain in first place in Group B and will stay there with a win over Russia on Friday. But still, it's not a team you see lose very often.

U.S. women's water polo has dominated internationally

Gallery: Michael Phelps' astounding Olympic career in images (SMG)

To give you a sense of just how good the U.S. is at water polo, consider that they have literally every available international competition since 2015.

That includes one Olympics, three World Championships, two World Cups, six World Leagues and two Pan American Games. They had not lost in the Olympics since taking silver in 2008, going undefeated in both 2012 and 2016. They had not lost an Olympic, World Championship or World Cup match since 2015.

That dominance extended into their first two Olympic matches, a then-record 25-4 win over Japan and 12-7 win over China.

The team was (and still remains) arguably Team USA's most assured gold medal, but seeing them losing is another odd result in an Olympics full of them.

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