It’s September and aside from the weather it seems like a new beginning for the club. Some important updates for everyone as we welcome a new season with lots of new faces.
We want to welcome four people to the coaching ranks. Sebastian Houng is our newest hire. He comes from Diamond Bar High School in SoCal where he was a record-setting goalkeeper prior to earning a spot at West Point, where he played and coached water polo. He’s now serving in the US Army in Austin.
Anthony Gerakos has graciously joined us to help with our Consolidated HS team in particular. He is another SoCal native who played at Indio High School and now lives in Belton with some young man named Jacob (a long-time member of the club for those who didn’t already know!).
Akriti Mandal and Kailee Seto are AquaTex athletes who join Corina Nunziata as coaches with our Swim2Score program under Coach Babs. All of them have been terrific additions to the staff. Just ask the youngsters who work with them!
Welcome aboard, all of you, and thank you for your dedication.
It’s been a banner fall for the club with a host of new families. It’s an exciting time for the club with the influx of new, young faces. We’re excited to start competing with all of them. Welcome to all of you, and to those yet to join us (we hope you will). Here are a few things for you and for our veteran families.
You can plan on an invitation to an online parent meeting in the coming weeks. We have a lot of new faces as part of the program, and lots of veterans as well. We need to share important information about how the club works: competition, communications, training, finances, etc. If you have a topic you want covered be sure to contact Coach James. Very tentatively we’ll put it on the calendar for Thursday, September 21 at 7:00 PM. More to come.
A quick reminder especially to our newcomers: because we’re part of AquaTex Swim Team you can expect to get emails from Coaches Mark and Marcy that are intended for swim families but not necessarily for water polo families. The emails that pertain specifically to AquaTex Waterpolo will either come from or from an email with aquatexwaterpolo.com domain. In response to an email regarding USA Swimming registration someone asked if that was relevant to water polo families. It is not but if you have any doubts please do contact me.
You can find these events on our Tourneys page. And for those who might ask, we are trying very hard to field our own teams from now on. I’ve mentioned it many times: we are very pleased with our relationship with Longhorn. And we will continue to communicate with them about fielding joint teams if neither club has enough for its own. But let’s plan on working toward fielding AquaTex-only rosters as much as possible going forward.
The Alamo Classic for 14u athletes is on October 7-8 in San Antonio and we do plan on sending AquaTex teams (12u and 10u in particular). This will be the first competition for many of our athletes, which we’re really excited about. We expect a big turnout so sign up today.
The Team Vegas Founders Cup will be our first ever trip to Nevada. As of now our plans are to take that same 14u team that competed in California at JOs this past summer. Every one of those athletes, except one (!), is eligible. I would like to have a team of 10 athletes committed to travel and play at that tournament by September 22 so we can officially enter. The deadline is October 1 but the tournament is filling up quickly. The sooner we can rally the sooner we can register. So start bugging each other via GroupMe! And, of course, if there are sufficient numbers of 12u athletes then we’ll sign them up too.
TAGS (Texas Age Group Championships), AKA the Texas middle school championships, is now officially on the calendar for November 4-5 in Southlake and Keller. Again, we want a big turnout for this tournament since it marks the end of our Fall season. It’s what we’re training for!
Camps & Clinics
I’m delighted to hear how many of our families are interested in or already registered to participate in ODP (USA Water Polo’s Olympic Development Program). For our newcomers, you can read more about what ODP is here. Maybe even more important, here is when and where the camps are taking place and for which age groups.
I was the head coach of the Southwest Zone Boys for eight great years so I have a high opinion of the program. Feel free to ask questions about it if you have any. I plan to attend the Cadet Camp #1 at the RRAC on September 17, and I encourage our coaches to do the same. There are some great opportunities to learn from other coaches.
The Perfect Goalie Camp
On September 16 Team USA goalie coach Michael Zellmer will be in Houston conducting two back-to-back goalie clinics. Our goalies are encouraged to attend. And we’ll definitely keep an eye open for other goalie-training opportunities in Texas.
Our consolidated team has a big weekend ahead with games at the RRAC against both consolidated and UIL teams (exhibitions!). Also, we are looking in to hosting a scrimmage day with other consolidated teams at the end of September. Stay tuned.
See you on the deck.