(L) Elizabeth Armstrong reaches for the ball at the FINA Women's World League Super Final on June 4, 2013 in Beijing.
Three Olympic champions, three silver medalists and one legendary coach make up the star-studded Class of 2019 that will be honored with induction into the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame.
Olympic gold and silver medalists Betsey Armstrong, Jessica Steffens and Lauren Wenger join Olympic silver medalists Ryan Bailey, Jeff Powers and Adam Wright. Rounding out the class is John Tanner, a six-time NCAA national champion coach of Stanford and former U.S. Olympic Team coach.
The inductees were announced Tuesday, and will be formally honored on June 7 at the annual USA Water Polo Hall of Fame Luncheon in Pleasanton, California.
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Armstrong, Steffens and Wagner are familiar faces to both American water polo fans and to each other, as they were all teammates on the 2012 team that won the gold medal at the Olympic Games London 2012. That historic medal was the first championship for Team USA in Olympic history after three consecutive silver or bronze medals. All three athletes also have a silver medal on their resume from the Beijing Games in 2008.
Bailey, Powers and Wright are also well-acquainted, having won the men’s silver medal together in Beijing. That medal was the first for a U.S. men’s team at an Olympic Games in 20 years. Bailey was a four-time Olympian while Powers and Wright competed at three Games each.
Tanner is one of the most decorated coaches in college water polo, having led Stanford’s women’s program to six national titles and producing 12 Olympians. Tanner also served as an assistant coach on the U.S. teams that competed in the 1992 and 2000 Olympic Games.
Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.