Inexperienced water polo team faces growing pains

Jason Flam, Web Editor

Despite early season struggles, Boys’ Water Polo Coach Pete Murphy continues to keep a positive outlook on the team’s future. The Bulldogs have limped out to a 2-13 record to start the season, while experiencing some turmoil after senior Kyle Miller was relieved of his duties as team captain and replaced by junior Nick Lazarra.

Murphy prefers to focus on continued improvement from the inexperienced players on the team. Murphy himself is in a new position, becoming a first-year head coach back in March. “It’s great being a first year coach because there is so much to learn about the position,” said Murphy.

“Coaching these guys is the number one thing I look forward to all day. Right now it’s about learning for everyone. But it’s definitely nice to be back by the pool again; it allows me to relive past experiences while also being able to experience new ones.”

The job was open for Murphy to grab after RB released former coach Matt D’anca before the season started. Murphy realizes that he was very lucky to grab the head coaching gig without prior coaching experience. “The job opened up, and I expressed interest first, and they were willing to offer me the job,” Murphy explained.

“But I was under the impression that I would have to work my way up from assistant coach. However, obviously I’m extremely happy with the position I’m in,” he said.

The Bulldogs have recently implemented a new offense in practice, which they plan to unveil in Friday’s game. The focus the rest of the way is on offense. “We decided to try and install a new offensive system. We’ll see how it goes,” Murphy said.

The struggles have been frequent for the inexperienced squad, but they are improving everyday and could make an impact in the future. “The best part about coaching these guys is watching the inexperienced ones improve and stick with it,” Murphy said.

But it doesn’t just stop there. Murphy feels that his team can always be working in some area of their game that can better prepare them for game action. “We still need to work on our basic fundamental skills and bring continued effort towards improvement,” Murphy said.

“But we can’t be too worried about our record this year. We knew coming in that we were probably going to have a down year, so we’re just trying to play catch-up with some of the better teams and hopefully, if we exist next year, we will be ready to play with the best,” he said.