Boys’ Water Polo Faces Disappointing Loss


Dylan Vanek

Boys’ water polo captain Belal Ibrahim takes aim at University High’s goal during second half of the game.

Dylan Vanek, Co-News Editor

Boys water polo (1-3) lost 17-2 against University High at the aquatic center on Sep. 25. This was the team’s third loss to the Trojans during its history.

“University is a good team; we don’t doubt that,” head coach Kate Avery said. “However, Portola is resilient, and we know that even if we don’t win we can still put up a tough fight and learn from teams that have more experience than us.”

The team warmed up for its game by practicing shooting, passing and a variety of drills to prepare themselves for the tough match ahead. The game commenced with the Bulldogs taking control of the ball after the face off.

“In the first quarter we made errors that made everyone swim more and work harder,” goalie and team captain Leonardo Pena said. “If we started the game better, the team would’ve had more energy by the fourth quarter.”

Despite letting past eight goals in the first quarter, the Bulldogs regained their composure. During the following quarter, Pena and the rest of the team did not allow one goal past them. Even though they did manage to score, the team member said they still felt they could have been better.

“We need to continue to focus on our pressure passing, moving on offense, and, most importantly, putting defense first,” Avery said. “We know that this team has strong outside shooters, has fast swimmers, and a good lefty that we need to be aware of on defense. If we are able to focus on those three things, I think we will have a competitive game with them next month.”

The team was able to drastically improve its defense between the first and second quarter, which allowed center John Gunay to get a goal past the tough Trojan defense. Leaving a positive impact after the tough game for the bulldogs, Gunay was the only player to score the two goals for the Bulldogs during second and third quarter.

“This game showed us what we need to work on for rest of the season,” said Gunay. “I think if we keep working hard in practice then we can do better in future games.”

In the future, Avery said she wants to focus on the team’s defense to be able to compete with the tougher teams. She said she believes that if her players can do so, they will be able to give the Trojans a run for their money in the future.