Boys’ water polo prepares for winter season through summer practices

September 10, 2020 — by Isaac Le and Andrew Li

Five months have passed since senior Armeen Aminzadeh has jumped into the pool for water polo practice. 

Excited to finally practice again during the 6-week summer session, Aminzadeh said he looked forward to getting back in shape through the summer practices, with the mere possibility of having his final water polo season. 

After the abrupt ending to many spring-season high school sports due to COVID-19, many teams were unsure of when their season would restart next school year. On June 21, the Central Coast Section (CCS) announced that all fall sports, including boys’ water polo, would be postponed until Dec. 28. 

Although games are not starting until late December, the boys are already preparing for this season. 

During the summer, coach Jerome Chung hosted group workouts at Saratoga High in order to keep the team in shape for the upcoming winter season, lasting a total of  six weeks. While following social distancing protocols and allowing a maximum of 12 athletes per session, Chung worked with the team on conditioning sets and basic shooting drills.

Throughout the six weeks, Chung has received positive feedback about the practices from parents, not only about safety, but also about the fact that the practices are an excellent opportunity for their athletes to finally get outside and practice with each other.

“Given the circumstances and various regulations in place, I thought that Coach Jerome did a fantastic job managing the practices,” team parent Tony Kuo said. “The team also did their part to stay safe, which allowed the practices to continue. It’s hard to stay cooped up inside the whole time, especially for our athletes when swim season was canceled and club polo was shut down.” 

Starting on Sept. 9, Chung is planning to begin a fall water polo camp in preparation for the season, extending until Nov. 8, with a maximum of 20 players allowed to attend. Similar to the sessions during the summer, these practices will include swimming, water polo conditioning, and small group exercises. Chung hopes to incorporate more teamwork as the practices continue. 

Some of the players are excited about the opportunity to continue playing amid the pandemic.

“Water polo practices over the summer were definitely worth it,” junior Marcus Kuo said. “I really enjoyed being back in the pool even though we couldn't pass or do many water-polo specific things, I think they were most useful for keeping in shape and staying fit.”

 

 

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Due to the lightning complex that occurred in the week of Aug.17, Santa Clara County is currently surrounded by wildfires, covering the city of Saratoga in heavy smoke. The air quality was in the range of 100 to 200 for the past five days, forcing SHS to close down. Photo by Selina Chen.

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