Girls’ water polo prepares for upcoming season with new head coach

September 14, 2022 — by Stephanie Sun and Sarah Zhou
Photo by Michelle Wang
Senior goalie Rosie Kline looks across the pool for an open player
With the loss of several players this season, the team is focusing on rebuilding a strong foundation.

Head Coach: Mike Allegretti

Last year’s record: 2-14

Recap: The team had difficulty adjusting to former coach Alex Hsueh’s teaching and leadership techniques last season. They placed seventh in the El Camino League.

Key Matchups: Monta Vista, Fremont and Wilcox

Star Players: Seniors goalie Rosie Kline and center forward Stephanie Sun; junior flat/hole set Ryder Gangemi; and sophomore flat Cassidy Coghlan

Key losses to graduation: Goalie Mahi Ravi and flat/wing Morgan Bettinger

League: El Camino 

Prognosis:

The team began the year facing challenges such as the loss of two players to graduation last year and the decision of two seniors, Fiona Feng and Hannah Baniani, not to play this season. The team lost 7-6 in their Sept. 2 scrimmage against Los Gatos and 8-7 in their first game against Monta Vista on Sept. 6, but won 12-3 against Milpitas on Sept. 8 with junior hole set Ryder Gangemi as their main scorer.

Currently, the team has 10 members and has been preparing for the upcoming season under new head coach Mike Allegretti, who also coaches the school’s swim team and played water polo during high school.

“At the beginning of the season, we were unsure if we would even have a coach, so we were really happy when [Allegretti] stepped in,” senior goalie Rosie Kline said.

Under his guidance, the team hopes to improve their performance;  key points of emphasis have been improving conditioning through drills and covering more plays. 

In the water, the Falcons have been working on basic skills like driving in, releasing for the ball and 6-on-5 formations during most practices.

Their practices typically start with swim sets and passing techniques. The team has also begun to use weight belts during passing exercises to build strength and stamina.

Despite some early losses and the challenges posed by the loss of several key players, Kline sees room for growth and success.

“I hope that the team has a good time and expands their leadership skills while developing their water polo skills,” she said.

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