With no prior experience in water polo, Co-Captain Daniel Tran ’17 arrived at Andover as a new Lower simply looking to try a new sport. Tran was able to combine his swimming prowess, hard work, and determination to secure a spot on the team during his first year at Andover. After working hard throughout his seasons on Andover Boys Water Polo, he eventually earned the title of Co-Captain as a Senior.
Tran said, “I actually started playing water polo in the fall of my Lower year when I first came to the school. It’s interesting because most of our players come onto the team having never played water polo. Many of them have a good swimming background and decide to try water polo for the first time when they come to campus. That was the route I took to the sport.”
Although Tran is a left-handed player, he usually plays on the right wing, giving him a better angle for shooting. His pool positioning helps him on offensive counterattacks and plays.
Ryan Sedaget ’19 said, “When Dan plays on the right it means that his left arm is in perfect position to shoot off a pass. It makes him a key contributor on offense. It is also a hard position to play as you are covered by the opposing team’s best player.”
Along with being a talented player, Tran is a capable leader. His teammates look up to him during practices and in games.
Rick Ono ’19 said, “Dan is one of the most dedicated people on the team. He comes to practice every day prepared to work, and it’s clear that he cares about the sport and the team. He leads us in workouts and always calls us out if we’re not paying attention. The most defining thing about Dan is definitely his work ethic. Even on days that everyone is tired and lazy, he works hard and inspires the whole team to do the same.”
“Dan is a great team leader. He’s focused on the game but is also close with the team. He regularly helps the new guys learn plays and basic techniques and keeps the other players on their toes,” added Nick Isenhower ’18.
Tran’s captaincy has allowed him to become a mentor to the new athletes on the team. He has continuously focused on helping his teammates improve their skills during practices.
“For me, since so many of our players have never played water polo, the most challenging part of the sport is getting everyone up to speed on the techniques of the game. I love that to be successful in the sport, you can’t just be the fastest person in the pool, but you also have to be the most aware and skilled,” said Tran.
Above all, Tran hopes for the success of his teammates as both individuals and as one cohesive unit. With Tran at the helm, Andover looks to have a successful season.