Former Stanford star Brenda Villa and Cal All-American Heather Petri are headed to their fourth Olympics as seven players with Bay Area ties were named Thursday to the U.S. women's water polo team.
Coach Adam Krikorian announced his 13-player team, which includes current Stanford standouts Melissa Seidemann of Walnut Creek and Annika Dries. Both players took a year off from Stanford to focus on the London Games.
Incoming freshman Maggie Steffens of Danville also made the team after deferring enrollment to Stanford for a year. She will join her sister Jessica Steffens, another former Cardinal star, on the roster. Cal graduate Elsie Windes will compete in her second Olympics after helping the United States qualify last fall at the Pan American Games.
The United States is the only country to win a medal in every women's competition: A silver in 2000, a bronze in 2004 and another silver in 2008.
Villa, who coaches water polo at Castilleja School in Palo Alto, is considered one of the world's all-time greatest players. She was a three-time All-American at Stanford, where as a freshman in 2001, Villa was named collegiate player of the year after scoring 69 goals. Villa scored 172 goals in her three years playing for the Cardinal.
Petri, 33, was a member of Miramonte High's first girls water polo team after having played on the boys team.
The Steffens sisters played at Monte Vista High before deciding the go to Stanford despite a
Brother Charlie Steffens was the senior captain last fall on a Cal team that included cousin Bryan Schnugg.
Contact Elliott Almond at 408-920-5865 and follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/elliottalmond.