Shooting for victory

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After rough seasons for the MVHS boys and girls water polo teams, finishing with records of 4-14 and 4-9 respectively, the program as a whole is looking to have a fresh start this season. Even more surprising than taking up the varsity coach position for both the boys and girls teams, new head coach Chris Love has extensive plans in store for the team along with new JV coach Mike Jarvis.

Love (left) has a brief discussion with Jarvis (right) during a water polo practice after school. Communication between the two new coaches is necessary to keep the program running smoothly.

Love (left) has a brief discussion with Jarvis (right) during a water polo practice after school. Communication between the two new coaches is necessary to keep the program running smoothly. Photo by Roshan Fernandez.

Love previously coached the women’s division I team at the University of Hawaii from 2008 to 2011 before coaching at various community colleges and high schools in Calif. He has just moved to the Cupertino area, and hopes to bring a new level of expertise and competitive atmosphere to the pool.

“I’m hard on them and I expect a lot, but I don’t berate and I’m not negative towards them,” Love said. “[I’m focusing on] a lot of techniques and tactics… so teaching [the players]to shoot the right way, pass the right way [and]play defense the right way.”

  I’m hard on them and I expect a lot, but I don’t berate and I’m not negative towards them. [I’m focusing on] a lot of techniques and tactics… so teaching [the players]to shoot the right way, pass the right way [and]play defense the right way.      -Varsity coach Chris Love

Aside from technique, he thinks that one of the most important components to a successful team is getting everyone on the same page.

“We [have to]play as a unit. We gotta be connected as one. That’s gonna be the most important part,” Love said. “So we’ll go over the skills that they need to be successful, but them going and playing in the game, not being afraid, is gonna be on them. I can’t teach them, they have to learn that.”

He hopes that these two strategies combined could lead the girls varsity team to win the El Camino league and qualify for CCS this year. But his primary goal is helping the players improve.

“My job as a coach and a mentor is to develop that talent and get them to where they want to be,” Love said.

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Jarvis looks onwards as his players do preseason conditioning in order to get into proper physical shape for the upcoming season. Photo by Roshan Fernandez.

JV coach Jarvis has similar goals to Love, but he faces additional challenges. Most of the underclassmen that join the water polo team have past swimming experience, but many lack experience playing water polo. This means Jarvis must also teach his players tactics and techniques in order for them to perform in games.

“Our training schedule is gonna be get them ready for the beginning [of the season], and they’ll be able to have that physicality and be able to grow in their ‘water polo sense’ and water polo skill as the season goes on,” Jarvis said.

Just like Love, he also is trying to implement the same core values, emphasizing the importance of creating a positive environment to the team.

“My goal is just to create a good team environment,” Jarvis said. “So I’m looking just to come in with my experience, see and assess what this team is capable of doing and [be]able build on what we have so next season goes a little bit smoother.”

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Moll is a junior and a first year staff member on El Estoque. He enjoys playing baseball and plays on the Monta Vista baseball team .