US routs South Africa 24-2 to begin water polo title defense


BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) – Four-time winner United States began the defense of its women’s water polo title with a 24-2 rout of South Africa at the world swimming championships on Sunday.

The U.S., Olympic champion and winner of every major competition since the 2013 worlds, leads Group B on goal difference after one game from Spain, which enjoyed a 10-2 win over New Zealand.

Italy defeated Canada 10-4 and China began its campaign with an 11-4 victory over Brazil in Group A.

The Netherlands, 2015 silver medalist, started later Sunday against France in Group C, where host Hungary was to play Japan.

In Group D, Russia was to face Greece and Australia was playing Kazakhstan.