Boys’ Varsity Water Polo Fall Preview

Emma Beckstrom, Staff Writer

After finishing fourth in league last fall and losing four seniors, the Palo Alto Varsity Boys’ water polo team hopes to be even more successful this season.
“My own goal and the team’s goal is to win leagues and to advance farther than we did last year in CCS (Central Coast Section),” Quinn Rockwell (’13) said.

Head Coach, Giovanni Napolitano says the team has been training hard since last summer to achieve these goals.

“[We did] swim sets in the morning [and] ball work in the afternoon,” Rockwell added.

Napolitano kicked off the pre-season by hosting a pasta feed to strengthen the team’s bond.

“[The dinner] brought the players together,” co-captain Peter Rockhold (’12) said.

Co-captains Aaron Zelineger (’12) and Rockhold gave the team a tour around the Paly campus during freshman orientation to welcome the incoming freshmen on the squad.

“[During the stroll] we were all in speedos and shoes,” Zelinger said.  “[Walking around in speedos] is just a way to get people comfortable with the school… and to make them feel a little bit more comfortable about wearing a speedo because for some of these guys it’s their first time stepping out of boxers,” Zelinger said.

Some freshmen, however, were already comfortable in their speedos.

“Stepping into the speedo is pretty nice, especially in the morning; I don’t have any tanlines,” Nelson Perla-Ward (’15) said.

Ward, the sole freshman on the squad, is already expected to be a key player.

“[I am determined] to beat Will Conner’s (’14) freshman record on varsity with 21 goals,” Perla-Ward said. “When I see [my teammates] work hard it gives me motivation to keep pushing.”

The team will start their season off against Mountain View High School on Tuesday September 12th at 3:30 p.m.