Today my sister arrives back from the USA Water Polo ODP Regional Championships. She spent the weekend in Ohio competing against some of the top players in East/West divisions for a chance to try out for the Junior National team. Before I gab more, let me give you some background on my sister the tryout process.
My sister and I have been playing water polo for about 4 years now. We began our freshman year in high school and managed to join an elite club team in the PNW by my sophomore year. There we trained 10 hours a week + games + 10 hours of swim practice. By our junior year we knew that we wanted to at least consider the idea of playing water polo in college so we made a list of dream schools and "attainable" schools.
Being a polo player from the North is tough. There aren't a lot of teams, the sport isn't nearly as popular as it is in southern California, and high school teams are there, the coaches just don't want to be.
So my sister and I made the best and added more training. During our high school season we were practicing more than 6 hours a day (2hrs h.s. + 2hrs club swim + 2hrs club polo), plus weekend tournaments and weight lifting. Our season went really well (I was named the state Defensive MVP and she set a scoring record for the state of 148 season goals!). We got the attention of a few schools, but most importantly, Long Beach State. From there my sister and I kept in touch with the LBSU coach. I realized about mid-August that I no longer had the same goals and made the tough decision not to sign with my sister to play at Long Beach. It was tough, I beat myself up for the decision for a long time, wondering Did I make the wrong decision? What if I change my mind? Are my parents going to be mad at me? But in the end, I'm glad I made the decision.
Fast forward about 5 months.
My sister tried out for the Regional Olympic Development Program team and was selected along with about 12 others to train for another tryout in 3 months. My sister, again, was chosen to continue on and play with the official PNW A Team at the Regional Championships this weekend.
I didn't get to fly out and watch her, which is hard! She and I do everything together! So when she called and told my mother she hadn't been selected to continue, my heart broke a little. But then moments later she texted me saying she had been selected, she just wanted to surprise my mother!
So I am so very proud of her, and I can't wait for her to fly out to Colorado Springs to the Olympic Training Center where she will get to tryout to have a spot on the Junior National Team!
Unfortunately with all the excitement comes the reality. In order for her to attend she has to raise $1000 for USA Water Polo, so if anyone is reading this and wants to make a donation, I would be so thankful. Here is the link to her donation page!