Water polo upsets Corona, loses to Loyola in tournament

Boys’ water polo squandered a three game win streak to start the season after suffering losses to Loyola and Coronado at the Coronado Cup. They go into their third week of non-league competition with a 6-2 record.

The Wolverines beat number three seed Corona del Mar on Sept. 17 in their biggest win of the season so far.

“We came together as a team and were forced for the first time this season to trust and rely on each other,” James McNamara ’10 said.

Last weekend the team played in the three-day Corona Cup tournament. They eventually placed fourth in the tournament after winning their first three games by at least five goals, but lost in the semifinal to Coronado and lost to Loyola.

“We faded out towards the end,” Maxx Bricklin ’09 said. “I think it came down to who wanted it more, and the teams we played wanted it more.”

The team has six games in the next three weeks, three of which are league games. They will also play in the S and R Cup tournament in two weeks.

“We play a very competitive schedule. All non-league games are teams that are ranked in their division,” Head Coach Larry Felix said. “I feel that if we show up and play our game we have an excellent chance at winning.”

Felix said that the players have been focusing on playing more as a team this year.

“Each player has a role and they have been doing what is asked of them,” he said. “I don’t look at goals scored as a star like most people do. Someone had to give them a good pass and I respect team play more than anything.”

Their closest margin was a 5-4 win at La Canada.

“I didn’t think the La Canada game would be as close as it was, but we have had players sick and missing for recruiting trips so our training had not been the best,” Felix said.

Bricklin, McNamara and Brendan Zwanefeld ’10 all have shoulder injuries while Max Eliot ’09 burst his ear drum. Two seniors have also missed practices for recruiting trips, which has interrupted their training.

Although only two seniors have gone on recruiting trips, many more have spoken with college coaches.

“All the seniors have been in discussions with different schools and they can all go on and play at the college Division 1 level,” Felix said.

The team’s training includes morning weights Tuesdays and Thursdays, and three hours of practice every afternoon. During these practices the team swims for an hour and plays water polo for two hours.

The team will play again against their biggest rival, Loyola, on Oct. 16. Loyola is 2-0 and beat Harvard-Westlake 12-11 in the Corona Cup tournament last weekend.

“We are going to work really hard and try to fix the mistakes that we made during our loss to Loyola this weekend,” McNamara said. The team will play Loyola again right before the CIF tournament.