Back in the water

Tucker Prosser, Editor-in-Chief

For the past few years, the Water Polo team has been a shell of its former glory. However, the team is getting back on its feet for the 2021-2022 school year and going even further beyond. Through sheer determination and lots of pushing from the new coach, Ramiro Saldain, the team has been revamping itself through intense exercises, conditioning, grueling practices, games, and tournaments. 

With a team composed of a motley crew of all grade levels, the competition has been heavy. Though lacking players and experience, the team was thrust right into the varsity leagues. The team is led by senior Nathan Klotzle and other starters, like junior Sean Rose, and sophomore Thomas Shea. 

Despite Covid affecting the program for several years, the players have enjoyed a somewhat normal season, fit with weight training and regular practices occurring as usual. Interactions with other schools and water polo organizations have been running smoothly, with numerous games and a tournament beneath the team’s belt. 

With 14 boys making up the team (primarily comprised of Freshmen), the Highlanders have been fighting through the varsity leagues and learning as they go. Dedicating two and a half to three and a half hours of training daily, on top of games, tournaments, and more, the team has been pouring blood, lots of sweat, and the occasional tear into improving. “As unfortunate as it is, I think there is a silver lining to it, in the sense that we are forced to play and train at such an advanced level,” said Chris Garland, a starting freshman on the team.

The coaches have been incredibly supportive and understanding of their circumstances, but they still push the team and make the players strive to be better. Pushing the players to the brink and beyond, the coaches have been building the team up to be stronger than it ever was in the past despite having some shoes to fill (or swimsuits). “So far I have seen a lot of improvement in the boy’s team, it has been tough switching around coaches and I think that the improvement from the beginning of the season to now is remarkable,” said Amelie Burg, a sophomore player for the girl’s water polo team, “I think that the team is held to some pretty high expectations which are hard to meet, but they have worked hard to get closer to meeting those expectations.”

Water Polo is an incredible sport, and the team is incredibly dedicated. “You’ll never have the same sense of accomplishment you get from playing water polo,” said Garland. “I’m not saying it’s the most you’ll ever get, but I truly believe it’s a special kind that is hard to find in other passions.”