Young team looks to continue water polo legacy

Mercer Island water polo captains, Kennan Adams, left, Kyle Nakagaki and Theo Danciu. - Chad Coleman/Mercer Island Reporter
Mercer Island water polo captains, Kennan Adams, left, Kyle Nakagaki and Theo Danciu.
— image credit: Chad Coleman/Mercer Island Reporter

Over the past 10 years, Mercer Island boys water polo has become synonymous with winning. The team dominates the league, and in the past that domination has earned the Islanders their fair share of state titles. This year, the team expects to continue that statement under second-year head coach Adam Massmann.

The 2009 squad returns with five varsity players, but has lost several key players to graduation, including the center forward and two other starters.

“We have a lot of young guys with not much experience; they need to step up and fill those starting roles,” said Massmann. In order to get to this level they will need to be at once regular season games start. Massmann said the team has been focusing on conditioning.

“It’s always kind of been our base in the past.”

Overall, the team wants not only to make another appearance at state, but also to put in a solid performance during the Greater San Diego Invitational Water Polo Tournament this fall. Last fall, the team took sixth place overall against some of the best teams in the nation.

“Our goal is to repeat,” said Massmann of the state title and invitational.

But before they get to California, or even the state tournament, the team will have to face off against a strong league.

“The top three or four teams are all right at the same level,” said the coach.

The team plays in a variety of locations around the Island, including Mary Wayte Pool and the Mercer Island Country Club, as well as the Edgebrook Pool in Factoria.

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