Water polo team continues successful season

Water polo team continues successful season

Although the water polo season started off with a loss for both the boys and girls teams, it quickly picked back up, with both teams winning the second game of the season on Feb. 22.

“The season has been good,” sophomore Hannah Bush said. “Our teamwork has really improved, and our defense [has improved] a lot.”

The beginning of the season saw several freshman players added to the team, including Massimo Manzi, who played for the Thunder club team for the last two summers.

“What I’ve been doing is helping some of the freshman that are just like me,” Manzi said. “[I’ve been] giving them tips, making them better so they can get better at the game.”

On March 23, the girls team took a 9-4 victory over John Paul II High School and battled hard, with a 12-7 loss against Lake Highlands High School. Meanwhile, the boys team won 16-14 over Irving High School after a 15-7 loss to South Grand Prairie High School.

Junior Ashton McGary’s favorite aspect of water polo is the competitiveness.

“I feel like all around it’s just a competitive sport,” McGary said. “I like how everybody gets after it. Nobody complains. When I see the ball that’s on site, I gotta go 100 percent to it.”

“It’s not like swim [team] where all you do is just swim,” Manzi agreed. “It’s actually competitive. It’s with other people … ‘Okay, get the ball, get on top of him.’ I like competitive.”

The water polo team is taught by Coach Sarah Carlile, who began coaching them two years ago. At their practices, Coach Carlile teaches through experience, reminding the team to always look at their center and charge the ball.

“I like her a lot. She definitely pushes us sometimes, and we know when to do certain drills,” Bush said. “We know how to work with each other without her asking.”

On April 6, the team took the Flower Mound Spring Classic by storm, winning three out of four games. While the girls team dominated over Irving with a 14-9 win and fought valiantly against Flower Mound despite a 14-0 loss, the boys team defeated MacArthur 17-5 and Paschal 17-6.

Bush said that her greatest goal for the team this season would be for all team members to score at least once, and use good defense and offense skills.

At the Natatorium’s April 12 games, the girls beat DHS 7-5 and defeated Irving 14-9. The boys team won against Rockwall Heath 14-12 and Irving 16-14.

McGary summarized the season by saying that it has been “very competitive, tiring, fun, brutal, all of it.”