Water polo teams go on road

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Men

After returning from a double win, double loss tournament this past weekend, the men’s water polo team is prepared to face Chaffey College on Wednesday at 4:15 p.m.

“It’s our last conference game,” head coach Joe Abing said. “We are going to have our best game yet.”

Preparation for the game has consisted of watching videos of past performances and conducting light practice drills in an attempt to not fatigue the players but to keep their bodies in motion and ready for the game to come.

The team was faced against high ranking opponents including the third ranked team in the state, West Valley College.

The victory against these teams tested the players and they will attempt to recreate the same outcome on Wednesday.

“We were third place in the tournament,” Abing said. “There were 16 teams in the tournament. All the best teams in the state were in the tournament, so finishing third was pretty good for us.”

Sophomore utility Randy Baldwin, who scored the winning goal, is very understanding of the team’s preparation for Wednesday’s match. “Now we are just mentally preparing,” Baldwin said. “We are having easy workouts just to keep us tapered so we don’t get too tired.”

Freshman driver Fernando Lua believes the team is ready for Wednesday’s game. “You can feel the energy,” Lua said, “we want to play.”

The team is calming down its practices and focusing on the fundamentals of the game to strengthen the mind in wake of the upcoming match.

“Mostly just basics,” Lua said, “if you’re going to catch the ball, catch and shoot don’t pick it in the water. “We are getting the workouts that we need so we could spend the energy in the game.”

The six-on-five drill is the main tool for pre-game training. The team works the basics of passing, looking around for open teammates and shooting on the goal.

Women

Cerritos College was able to pull even at the truWest Battle at the Beach Tournament last Friday and Saturday without head coach Sergio Macias leading them due to the birth of his first child.

Assistant head coach Stephanie Tuning helped lead the team, but saw that the players were taking it upon themselves to step up without the head coach being there.

“We saw a lot more leaders besides the captains. Everyone stepped it up because we know we didn’t have Sergio (Macias) there directing the team. So they lead themselves to those wins,” she said.

The attention has turned to its final conference game against Chaffey College on Wednesday at 3 p.m.

“We have to take what they learned from being (able) to win close games and apply (these lessons) this Wednesday against Chaffey. We are pretty much just playing for the third or fourth seed and if we win, we get the three seed and if we lose, we get the four seed,” he said.

Co-captain and center Catie Tuning sees the game as a challenge and a way to help the team in the tournament.

“It’s important because Chaffey is one of the top contenders in our conference, so if we can take them down and show them what we have, then it’s good momentum to work off going into the conference championships,” Tuning said.

Co-captain Teresa Zuniga said, “It’s going to build up our confidence going into the tournament and show us what we need to do to be a contender for the conference title.”

Macias has seen the women mature as the season has progressed and the next couple of weeks will determine how much the team has learned.

“They have shown some spurts of confidence and leadership. Next is to play under the pressure and hopefully we can ruin somebody’s season,” he said.

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