By David Uribe
Of all the teams at East Los Angeles College, no team may have had to jump through as many hurdles as Women’s Water Polo.
Even swimming in water can create a great environment for sports and learning how to become a team.
After two years of no water polo team action due to the covid pandemic, it has not been a refreshing change for the water polo teams to get back into it.
While most other sports were given the resources to continue practicing once things started to get back to normal, the water polo team didn’t have access to the one resource they need the most: the pool.
Water Polo wasn’t able to use their pool again until mid-July. Due to a lack of a pool to showcase to potential student-athletes, the program missed three more months of practice time and three crucial months of off-season recruiting.
The end result was, as might be expected, a very difficult battle throughout the fall 2021 season.
Unfortunately, the pandemic also caused already scheduled work on the swimming facility to be postponed since necessary materials were out of stock.
The squad was left without a pool to practice in as a result, and was forced to wait nearly two months to practice after the majority of other teams in the area had started.
All that changed once the season started again for this year. The Water Polo coach, Diana Romero, was very much looking forward to this season.
Romero was excited to finally welcome back her team. “Reuniting with the team was a special one,” Romero said.
“We haven’t seen each other for over a year and when we finally did, it was very exciting. We weren’t able to get in the pool right away because of construction.
When we finally did, it really felt real, and everyone was thrilled to be back,” Romero said it was an adjustment to changes for the team during the season. “Workouts in the beginning were challenging,” Romero said. “We [were] behind some schools who have been practicing for almost two months. But everyone has been putting in the work.”
New athletes and those returning are helping each other and growing as a team. Practices are very valuable because every day we work on something different and for many, it’s new.”
The final match of the season was against Chaffey on October 26.
The Huskies suffered a loss to Chaffey with the score being 16-4. They definitely tried their hardest and the women should be proud of the hard work they put into this sport.
Both new and returning players scored in the game. Newcomer Hannah Belt made an impact and returning member Nathalie Martinez making a big splash with two out of ELAC’s four scoring points this game.
Alina Perez was also a standout performer this game for ELAC as she also scored two out of the four points for ELAC.
The game lasted for roughly one hour and game personnel Alba Espinar-Gomez was the official for this game. Chaffey led with 32 shots to ELAC’s 13 shots.