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Ashleigh Johnson
Courtesy: Beverly Schaefer

Ashleigh Johnson Named to USA Women's Water Polo Olympic Team

By: Princeton Athletic Communications
          Release: 06/16/2016
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PRINCETON, N.J. – As you walk into the main entrance of DeNunzio Pool, the Princeton Olympians are listed on the right wall. As you read each Olympian’s plaque, you’ll notice that all of them are from the Swimming and Diving teams. That will change this summer as Ashleigh Johnson, senior-in-waiting, was named to the USA Olympic Water Polo team today.

“We are very excited for Ashleigh to make the Olympic team,” Princeton water polo head coach Luis Nicolao. “This is thrilling for our program. To have an Olympian from Princeton water polo is something that everyone is exhilarated about.”

The former Tiger recently helped the U.S. national team to its third straight FINA World League title and 10th overall. The team won each of its six matches in the tournament, scoring an average of 13.5 goals per contest. Johnson made 45 saves in her four appearances with her best performance coming in the semifinals as she stopped 13 shots against China.

In her time away from Princeton, Johnson was named an AAU Sullivan Award semifinalist. Last summer, the senior-in-waiting was named the 2015 WaterPoloWorld Female Player of the Year after helping the United States to a FINA World Championship. She was named the championship match MVP and tournament’s top goalkeeper.

The 2015 Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Player of the Year, Johnson has posted an 81-13 overall mark, turning away 1,062 of the 1,533 shots she has faced en route to a 0.693 save percentage for Princeton. Putting together three of the highest single-season save totals in program history, Johnson is already the Tigers’ career leader.

A three-game set vs. Hungary (June 27-July 2) and Russia (July 21-27) will be the national team’s last warmups before taking on Spain (Aug. 9) in match play of the 2016 Rio Olympics. USA won the gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics.

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