The Texas State women’s water polo club could not stay afloat Saturday and Sunday in the Collegiate Water Polo Association state tournament at the Aqua Sports Center.
The competition served as placement for the clubs competing in the Women’s Texas Division, which include Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Rice, Trinity and Baylor.
The Bobcats lost to Texas Tech 12-1, Texas 15-2 and A&M 12-4. Texas State won from Baylor’s forfeit and moved from fourth to third place.
Kathryn Garner, interdisciplinary studies junior, said the club left the tournament with a positive experience. She said the club’s strategy was to double-team the main scoring player on the opposing side while on defense. Garner said the members swam faster than in any other competition this year.
“We played our best, and that’s all anyone can ever ask for,” Garner said.
Coach James Locus, philosophy junior, said the competition produced a good outcome for the club. Locus said the members did not play as a team in the first game, but they worked together in the following matches.
“With each game, their cohesion got greater and greater,” Locus said.
Lyndsey Gonzales, biology freshman, said the club learned from its errors and managed to improve defensively.
“We learned to get back on ‘D’,” Gonzales said. “We just fine tuned a little bit of mistakes that have been killing us lately.”
Ana Vargas, pre-international studies sophomore, said she cherishes the teamwork shown during the weekend.
“It was a big opportunity to really come together because this is our first year to really have a women’s (club),” Vargas said. “We’re really getting to know each other and polishing our skills we acquired throughout the year.”
Vargas and other experienced players were committed to involving newcomers. The club has a mixed group of 12 experienced and first-time players, she said.
“We have a wonderful group of girls who are willing to learn,” Vargas said.
Vargas hopes with the remaining days to practice, the club will continue the intensity demonstrated during the season.
Alyssa Robinson, electronic media junior, said three-days-per-week practices are not enough for the club. Robinson said members are involved in other organizations that can prevent them from attending practices.
“The fact that we even have a (women’s club) at all, it’s amazing,” Robinson said. “It’s motivated us to work harder for the next tournament.”
Robinson said the club needs to focus on strengths, like faster swimmers and endurance.
“We just need to tap into that and really work on moving around tiring out the other (clubs) who don’t have very good swimmers,” Robinson said.
Robinson said members need to work on areas like accuracy and shooting under pressure. The club executes well during drills, Robinson said, but in tournaments, the team loses accuracy because of pressure.
“We got them down, but perfection would be nice,” Garner said.
Locus said competitions with long breaks hurt the club.
“The tournaments are spaced out — two weeks later a tournament and in a month a tournament. That just really hurts (club) cohesion and play,” Locus said. “If we could play more scrimmages (and) tournaments, we would really get the basics down: passing, shooting, moving around, ball movement.”
The women’s water polo club will play Texas and Rice in the Bracket “A” of the Division Championship April 18 in Austin. The winner of the tournament will advance to the Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship in California.