National Showcases Connect High School Athletes to Collegiate Water Polo Programs

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Photo Courtesy: Annie Tworoger 3rd & Ocean

Summer water polo camps are a great opportunity to hone skills for your club or high school team. But when it comes to make the leap to college, getting to the right coaches’ combine is an essential part of the equation.

[Swimming World’s Annual Water Polo Camp Guide—2019 Version]

“It’s all about casting as broad of a net as we can for participation at the school or coach level and to doing as much outreach as we can to bring in quality, committed athletes to be in front of them,” said Jim Staresinic, who runs a combine out in Pittsburgh, PA. “Then, we hope for really good things to happen.”

As part of Swimming World’s coverage of opportunities for age group polo athletes, following is information about three combines taking place on or around July 1st; one at Trees Pool at the the University of Pittsburgh, one in Westlake Village, outside of Los Angeles and one in El Cajon, California at Granite Hills High School.

10th Annual San Diego Skills and Drills College Clinic

The San Diego Skills and Drills College Clinic—a program put together by Doug Peabody of San Diego Shores—is now in its 10th year and will take place on July 1 at Granite Hills High School in El Cajon, California. With between 20 to 25 colleges attending, it’s consistently one of the nation’s most prominent college combines. According to Coach Ian Davidson, the Clinic regularly draws attendees from Florida, Connecticut, Michigan, Washington State—even as far away as Hungary and Sweden.

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Photo Courtesy: San Diego Shores

Over the decade of this event, Peabody, Davidson and others have helped more than 650 student athletes connect with a college polo program. A sample of athletes from past sessions include Stanford’s Kiley Neushel, Nick Bell and Denise Mammalito of USC and Cole Atwell, who will start at Brown next fall.

Billed as a showcase allowing college coaches to observe athletes training as well as meet and evaluate them in person, the cost is $325 per athlete with enrollment capped at 65 athletes per gender. The times are: 7:30am-12:30pm for the boys and 12:00pm-5:00pm for the girls.

There will be a skills and drills clinic with sport-specific testing and logging of times. At the clinic’s conclusion participants will receive materials that will enable them to gain opportunities to keep playing the sport they love. For more information email: sdskillsanddrills@gmail.com

Women’s College program expected to attend:

Azuza Pacific Harvard SDSU
Brown Hawaii SFU
Bucknell LMU Sienna
Cal Lutheran Marist SJSU
Cal Tech Michigan UCSB
Carthage College Occidental UCSD
Conn College Penn State Behrend USC
CSU East Bay Pomona VMI
CSUN Princeton Wagner
FPU Santa Clara Washington & Jefferson
Fresno

Men’s College programs expected to attend:

Air Force FPU SFU
Brown Harvard SJSU
Bucknell Navy Stanford
Cal Occidental UCSD
Cal Tech Penn State Behrend USC
Cal Lutheran Pomona Wagner
Conn College Santa Clara
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Photo Courtesy: Catharyn Hayne

Collegiate Showcase 2019 Presented by Oaks Christian School

This is the third time that Jack Kocur, head boys and girls coach at Oaks Christian High School, will host this event at Westlake Village in California. It’s targeted for current high school sophomores (class of 2022), juniors (class of 2021), and seniors (class of 2020). Advertised as an opportunity for athletes to demonstrate water polo talents and academic achievements, the showcase is a chance to be seen by over 25 college coaches.

The event will include appearances by Kami Craig, a three-time Olympian as well as winner of the 2009 and 2010 Cutino Award, and John Abdou, USA Water Polo’s Chief High Performance Director. Craig and Abdou are in addition to an impressive roster of coaches that include Kocur, a member of the US men’s coaching staff at the 2016 Olympics and former Head Coach for Pepperdine University. He’s also the Director of Pride Water Polo.

[On The Record with Kristin Rodriguez of USA Water Polo]

Also appearing: Kristin Rodriguez, Head Coach of the U.S. Women’s Cadet National Team; Alex La, Associate Head Coach Pomona-Pitzer, Men’s Rio Olympics Scouting Coach; Devin Hurst, Head Coach for Royal HS; Norm Van Nieren, an ODP National Team Selection Camp coach who is with SET Water Polo and the Canadian Jr. National Team. Also on hand will be Andrew Silva, a U.S. Women’s Youth National Team Assistant Coach who will serve as goalie coach.

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Photo Courtesy: San Diego Shores

Combine dates: girls on Monday, July 1 and boys on Tuesday, July 2. The cost is $295. Registration information is available at Oakschristian.campbrainregistration.com

Confirmed programs at the OC Collegiate Showcase:

Brown University Fresno Pacific Pepperdine
Bucknell University George Washington Pomona-Pitzer College
California Baptist Harvard University San Jose State
California Institute of Technology Indiana University St. Francis University (PA)
California Lutheran Loyola Marymount U.S. Naval Academy
California State Fresno Massachusetts Institute of Technology University of California, Santa Barbara
California State Northridge Occidental College University of La Verne
Claremont-Mudd-Scipps Colleges Ottawa University Arizona University of Redlands

Programs which have responded, but have not yet confirmed:

Long Island University, Brooklyn
Princeton
Salem International
Siena College

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Photo Courtesy: Cathryn Hayne

Water Polo Combine 2019

This event in Pittsburgh, overseen by Staresinic and Nikola Malezanov, is now in its fourth year. With a regional focus, the Water Polo Combine looks to make substantial connections between collegiate coaches and male & female high school athletes from outside of California.

[On The Record with Jim Staresinic of Pittsburgh Women’s Water Polo Club Team]

Offering grade-eligible athletes—members of their high school’s 2020, 2021 and 2022 graduating classes—and their parents an opportunity to directly interact with coaches, it will include as many as 20 programs from the East, including a number of DII and DIII schools.

Slobodan Nikic, the great Serbian national team member and three-time Olympian—and part of the Gold medal winning squad at the 2016 Rio Olympics—has been announced as a special guest.

The fee for the combine is s $195. It will be held on from 8am to 4 pm on Monday, July 1. Each athlete will participate in skills testing and demonstration as well as measurements and live scrimmages, with the college coaches present on the pool deck.

For an additional $195 there is also a Combine PLUS option allowing participants to attend from Sunday, June 30 through Tuesday, July 2 to practice skill measurements, drills, scrimmage ahead of the Combine and then play in a 1-day tournament versus teams made up of Combine PLUS athletes. Film analysis and feedback from that tournament will be available to assist athletes with their performance.

For more information contact Coach Staresinic at 724-544-7680

Programs expected to attend the Water Polo Combine 2019:

Ottawa University, Arizona Washington & Jefferson Monmouth
VMI Bucknell University St Francis Brooklyn
Salem International Grove City College Whittenberg
Gannon Penn State Behrend Macalister
Mercyhurst University of Toronto Fordham
Johns Hopkins McKendree University Brown

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  1. Mary Ahola

    Celia Fraker Formiller