‘Badass’ U.S. Women’s Water Polo Briefly Shatters Records In Olympic Rout Of Japan

History-making didn't begin to describe the Americans' opening match of the Tokyo Games.

The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee called the U.S. women’s water polo team the “most prolific offensive attack in Olympics history.”

And it wasn’t just hype.

The Americans routed Japan 25-4 in their opening match at the Tokyo Olympics on Saturday to obliterate the Olympics record book. Briefly.

Hours later, Spain recorded a 29-4 win over South Africa to own the record for most goals in a game and the largest winning margin in women’s water polo at the Olympics.

It was nice while it lasted for Team USA. According to ESPN, the squad surpassed the previous Olympic record for goals in a game by 8 (set at the 2012 London Games) and had scored the most goals in a half, 14. The 21-goal victory margin was also the largest ever to that point, shattering the 13-goal differential in Australia’s 16-3 win over Great Britain in 2012.

“These women are as badass as it gets,” coach Adam Krikorian told USA Today earlier.

Maggie Steffens and Stephanie Haralabidis led the U.S. team with five goals each, and Ashleigh Johnson stopped 15 of 19 shots.

What a way for the two-time defending Olympic champs to start the competition.

Ashleigh Johnson in action during the U.S. team's historic rout of Japan.
Ashleigh Johnson in action during the U.S. team's historic rout of Japan.

This story has been updated to note that Spain broke records set by the U.S. earlier in the day.