The Smoke Signal, MSJ's Official Newspaper


Boys and Girls Water Polo show strong performances against Newark Memorial

By Staff Writers Chahak Gupta & Annie Xu

On September 14, MSJ Varsity Boys and Girls Water Polo lost 14-17 and won 10-3 respectively against the Newark Memorial High School Cougars. Despite not meeting their highest expectations for the game, both teams are proud of their efforts, and anticipate further improvement and strong performances. 

The Boys Water Polo team aimed to dominate the game aggressively early on, trying to maintain a lead throughout the matches. Senior Justin Gore and Junior Kaidinh Tran played exceptionally well, scoring exciting goals in the third and fourth quarter to close the gap to a difference of three points. Despite their loss, the team feels fulfilled in their efforts and are confident in their ability to improve. “We wanted to make it a high scoring game, which we did manage to do. I think if we had a little more practice, we could have sealed the deal,” Boys and Girls Water Polo Coach Ryan Tang said. In future practices, the Warriors hope to better execute their devised game plans and work on team synergy. “I think we’re all really strong as individual players, but as a team, we need to focus on executing what we set the day before,” Tran said.  

Following Boys Water Polo, Girls Water Polo approached their game confidently and with high hopes, focusing on a positive mindset throughout the match. “Even if we don’t win every game…, we want to at least make them close games. A lot of our performance depends on the mentality that we have going in,” Co-Captain Junior Kira Clark said. Girls Water Polo maintained a wide lead early on, with this gap stretching as the game progressed, because the players did an excellent job both defensively and offensively. Notably, Co-Captain and Goalie Junior Marissa White managed to block many of the Cougars’ shots, and by the second quarter, the Warriors were leading 4-1. Co-Captain Senior Tanvi Karkera, in addition to playing well defensively, also stood out offensively, bringing in two points for the team. “She’s always been really strong on defense, but she historically has not been the best shooter. She’s worked really hard at that this season … If she can keep her performance today up, the other teams are in big trouble,” Tang said. 

With their many experienced players, Girls Water Polo are confident in their own skills and hope to build on their strengths as a team. “We’re really just trying to work on our professionalism and some small habits like rebounding, dribbling the ball out, catching the ball, so that everything plays out well during the match,” Tang said. 

As the fall season progresses, the teams hope to advance within their leagues and finish well at NCS Championships. Despite future games with tough opponents such as James Logan High School and Piedmont High School, Girls and Boys Water Polo are excited to rise to the challenge. “Both of the teams have some amazing strengths that we often forget during the game. But if we take it easy, and work on applying them more, we’ll be able to get it done,” Tang said. 

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