RIO DE JANEIRO -- Maggie Steffens and the U.S. womens water polo team stood on the top step of the podium and belted out the national anthem through a mixture of smiles and tears.Italy and Russia stood on each side of the Americans, and they might as well have been miles away.The dominant U.S. womens teams in gymnastics, basketball and swimming have some company. The womens water polo team, hailing almost exclusively from California, beat Italy 12-5 on Friday for its second straight gold medal, and there are signs it could replicate the sustained success of some of Americas most famous Olympic juggernauts.We could, goaltender Ashleigh Johnson said. But some of our girls arent coming back, and they already know that. It wont be the same team. This team will never be the same team again.The U.S. closed its schedule with 22 straight wins, rolling through its six games in Rio by a combined score of 73-32. It currently holds each of the major crowns in womens water polo, adding a second Olympic gold to its world championship, World Cup and World League Super Final titles.The ease with which it dispatched with the eight-team field in Rio -- the Americans held the lead after 23 of their 24 quarters and trailed for a total of 44 seconds -- made a case for this team being the best ever assembled in the sport.I think you could make a strong argument, coach Adam Krikorian said. That 2012 team in the last games I love to death, they were a gritty, hard-nosed, tough crew, but this team has done some special things.Said Italy coach Fabio Conti: USA is, in this moment, a team of another universe.While the 2012 gold medalists were a veteran crew, the U.S. had nine newcomers this year, including teenagers Maddie Musselman and sisters Makenzie and Aria Fischer. Musselman scored 12 goals and made the all-tournament team, and Makenzie Fischer scored seven times.Johnson, the first black woman to play water polo for the United States in the Olympics, turns 22 next month. Steffens, the MVP of the last two games, is just 23 and sounded ready to sign up for Tokyo right away.I dont know whats going to happen in the next four years, Steffens said, but this is too incredible, incredible of an opportunity to call yourself an Olympian with a team, a real team, not just people that are thrown together, but a team that has grown together, to pass up again. So I for sure would love to be back in this situation in four years.The big question is the status of Krikorian, who said he wasnt sure if he would continue with the national team. Krikorians brother, Blake, died right before the start of the Olympics, starting an emotional time for the former UCLA coach, culminating with the victory in the final.Krikorian is beloved by his players, who rallied to his side when he returned to Rio after going home to spend time with his family, and his departure could alter the trajectory of the program.I love coaching. I love this team, Krikorian said. I love having an impact on young people. I love leading. That doesnt mean that this is what Im going to do the rest of my life. I think I need to figure that out. I think its always good to keep your options open and see what else is out there.---Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap Pierre Turgeon Jersey . The team also announced Tuesday that the Braves will wear a commemorative patch on the right sleeve during the season. The patch, shaped like home plate, carries the number 715, Aarons autograph and a "40th Anniversary" banner. Jake McCabe Jersey . 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Fernandez, coached in Toronto by former two-time Olympic silver medallist Brian Orser, scored 267.11 points and is the first champion to successfully defend since Russias Evgeny Plushenko in 2005 and 2006.Kenya have until April 5 to fall in line with global anti-doping rules or face being declared non-compliant by the World Anti-Doping Agency, a step toward a possible ban from the Olympics for its track and field athletes. Kenya already missed one deadline this month to pass anti-doping legislation and properly set up and provide funding for its new national anti-doping agency.The latest draft regulations submitted by the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya still do not comply with the world anti-doping code, WADA said in a statement on Monday. The East African country will now be assessed by an independent compliance review committee on April 5, when consideration will be given to a possible recommendation of non-compliance, WADA said. That committee will make its recommendation to WADAs board, which will make the final decision on Kenyas status at its meeting on May 12.Declaring Kenya non-compliant could cause its athletes to miss the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August as IAAF President Sebastian Coe has previously said his sport would consider suspending the country, a distance-running powerhouse, if its in breach of anti-doping rules. Sebastian Coe says he will consider suspending a country involved in doping scandals The IAAF suspended Russia from all international track and field competition after it was declared non-compliant with WADAs code following a report detailing a vast system of doping and cover-ups.Along with problems with its naational anti-doping body and failure to pass anti-doping legislation, Kenya is also accused of doping cover-ups, with four senior athletics officials now under investigation by the IAAF for potential subversion of anti-doping procedures.ddddddddddddhe chief executive of Athletics Kenya, the national track and field federation, was the latest official to be suspended. Isaac Mwangi was placed under investigation by the IAAF on Monday.Two runners who failed doping tests at last years world championships alleged in an interview with The Associated Press that Mwangi asked them for bribes in exchange for more lenient sanctions, leading to the investigation. Isaac Mwangi has been placed under investigation by the IAAF Mwangi joined Athletics Kenya President Isaiah Kiplagat, vice president David Okeyo and former federation treasurer Joseph Kinyua in being suspended by the IAAF pending investigations by its ethics committee. Kiplagat, Okeyo and Kinyua are also accused of subverting anti-doping rules and other wrongdoing related to the misappropriation of federation money.Over 40 Kenyan athletes have failed doping tests since the 2012 Olympics, throwing the sport into crisis in the country. Also See: Kenyan athletics chief suspended Kenya referred by WADA Kenya allegations worry WADA Brazils doping lab under threat Jerseys NFL Cheap Wholesale NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys China Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping Cheap NFL Jerseys China Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap ' ' '