By CAROL GULLSTAD
Special to the Reporter
The Mercer Island Islanders boys water polo team lost two games by slim margins in recent matchups in the pool.
Roosevelt earned a 16-14 victory against Mercer Island on Oct. 11. The Islanders also lost to the Bellevue Wolverines 9-7 on Oct. 9. In the contest between Roosevelt and Mercer Island, six goals were scored in the final three minutes of the game. Senior team captain Nate Robinson scored a team-high five goals in the loss against Roosevelt. Islanders’ goalie Jacob Swerland had eight saves.
Robinson said his team was upbeat despite the close defeat to Roosevelt.
“Our bench was going nuts the entire game. Everyone had a lot of really positive energy that was radiating out to everyone else. It was just a really awesome thing to be a part of,” Robinson said.
Robinson said the Islanders have improved immensely since the beginning of the 2018 season.
“I definitely think we’ve improved. We’ve lost a bunch of one- or two-goal games that we just kinda let slip away, but we’ve learned from all those games and we haven’t let those games derail us from where we want to be in November. I think that since we don’t really get down on ourselves or our teammates, we can really grow and improve and take each game as a learning experience win or lose,” Robinson said. “Our team right now is just starting to get into a rhythm right now. We’ve got a great energy going in our games and we all just sort of feed off of each others’ energy. I think if we keep this up, we can really do something special come the state tournament.”
In the two-goal loss to the Wolverines on Oct. 9, Swerland had six saves between the posts. Leif Gullstad and Robinson scored a team-high two goals apiece in the loss to Bellevue.