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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Stephanie Chen: stunning senior water polo sprinter

   Senior Stephanie Chen started playing water polo in the beginning of her freshman year. Although this is only her second year on varsity, she has been honing her swimming for 12 years.
   “If it wasn’t for her, the polo team wouldn’t have the speed and lobs we need to win games,” said junior Nikki de Roos, who has been playing water polo with Chen for two years.
   On top of playing water polo in the fall, she swims for the school’s swim team in the spring.
   “I swim year-round, so I get some really good speed and endurance that helps me with defense and counterattacks,” Chen said.
   Chen started swimming to exercise because no other sport appealed to her. Her parents realized her potential when she made her first Junior Olympic cut when she was 10.
   “I didn’t really know what was going on,” Chen said. “But I knew I was in swimming for real when I got into one of the more elite groups.”
   Even the new water polo coach, Rafael Alapont, can tell that Chen is extremely talented even though they have only worked together for about a month.
   “She is a hard worker as well as the sprinter of the team,” Alapont said. “She hasn’t lost a sprint this season and scores every game.”
   Because this is her last year of high school, Chen is determined to make it a great one. She has never regretted joining the water polo team and hopes to continue to play polo and swim in college if she has the time.

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