Water Polo Falters
Stiff competition results in winless weekend for team
Published: Thursday, October 4, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 4, 2012 11:10
This past weekend the Santa Clara men’s water polo team dropped all four of their games against tough competition at the Southern California Tournament in Santa Barbara.
The two-day event pitted the 17th-ranked Broncos against four ranked opponents. On day one, the Broncos lost 17-3 to No. 2 University of California, Los Angeles. and 16-9 to No. 10 Loyola Marymount University.
However, Head Coach Keith Wilbur was not discouraged by the results. “LMU is one of the top two teams in our conference right now,” said Wilbur in an interview with Santa Clara Broncos Athletics online.
“We can improve on our half-court defense and ball control on offense. That led to too many counterattacks for them.”
The second day saw the Broncos fall to No. 16 Princeton University 13-8 and No. 12 University of California, Davis by a score of 9-5. The Broncos now hold a record of 7-9 heading into the second month of the three-month season, and will have an opportunity for redemption against LMU and UC Davis in upcoming conference games.
“We’re a young team,” said goalie John Nash. “It’s going to take some time to develop.” Nash said he believed that the team improved over the course of the tournament and was encouraged by the contributions of several young players
“It’s my responsibility to help guys know where they are and where the ball is and to put everyone in the right place,” Nash said of his role as goalie. “Along with my pool defender, we are the quarterbacks of the defense.”
With the team being outscored by a total of 55-25 over the weekend, improving defense is a priority for the Broncos.“We’re just going to try to keep getting better every day,” Nash commented.
Their 7-9 record puts the Broncos in fifth place in the Western Water Polo Association standings. UC Davis leads with an overall record of 11-7. The Broncos will host their Rodeo Tournament at Sullivan Aquatic Center Oct. 19-21, and will have a chance to play some out-of-conference teams. This tournament will be the first time the Broncos get to play at home this year. The team’s ultimate goal is to win a conference championship, and they are confident that their goal is within reach.
“We know where we’re at and we know what we need to improve,” said Nash. “We’re going to be playing our best water polo come November.” In November, the team will end their season at the WWPA championships.
Contact Henry Gula at email@example.com or call (408) 554-4852.