Women’s water polo ready to make a splash in 2012

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Women’s water polo ready to make a splash in 2012

Photo courtesy of SRJC women's water polo team

Photo courtesy of SRJC women's water polo team

Photo courtesy of SRJC women's water polo team

SRJC players shoot for a goal in women’s waterpolo. The women’s team will fight for a title in 2012.

Jimmy Merrill, Staff Writer

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The women’s water polo team is determined to build and improve on a disappointing 2011 campaign.

This year’s team is young with seven new players and four returning players, including Justine Filipello. However, Filipello is not just any returning player; she is a 1998 All-American who is making her return to the pool at Santa Rosa Junior College after nearly a 14-year hiatus.

“I recruited goalies and they all fell through for different reasons,” head coach Jill McCormick said. “And then this summer I get an email from Justine. So that’s kinda of cool.” Filipello left after the 1998 season and McCormick took over as head coach in 2000, so this the first time McCormick will coach Filipello.

McCormick knows for her team to be successful, it will truly have to be a team effort. The team has a different dynamic to work with: having only 11 players means only four subs. The average water polo team ranges from 18 to 21 players.

“We had a lot of turnover from last year, we were very sophomore heavy,”McCormick said. “We have to keep everyone healthy. We can’t absorb season-ending injuries.”

Brooke Woodford leads the team as captain this year, but McCormick and her coaching staff expect some new players to break out. “Holly Cloud is from Napa. She’s tall, she’s strong and she’s got a lot of experience. Also Becky Kremer. She is a freshman from Yosemite High School. She is quick, fast and has a lot of speed,” McCormick said. McCormick also described MeganMcGrath and Michelle Pollastrini as “the freshmen with the most experience.”

With a young team and unlimited potential, the Bear Cub women’s water polo team will look to stay healthy and competitive all season long.

The team will make their home debut in a water polo double header against conference foe Sierra College on Sept. 12 with women playing at 3:30 p.m. and men playing at 5 p.m.

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