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Boys Water Polo Struggles to Overcome Early Deficit

Andover Boys Water Polo worked tirelessly to gain ground against Choate after getting down early. After struggling offensively initially, Captain Nick Faulkner’s ’16 efforts spearheaded the Andover comeback attempt, which culminated in a one-goal lead midway through the third quarter. The game remained competitive throughout, however Choate was able to take advantage of Andover’s small errors. Andover’s comeback fell short, and the game ultimately ended in a 14-12 loss.

With the loss, Andover’s record fell to 2-5, just after notching a win against Hotchkiss to end its four-game losing streak.

Andover faced the most difficulty against Choate’s offense. Marred by continual lengthy passing sequences, the team struggled to take advantage of its shooting opportunities.

Despite his team’s fierce offensive battles, Faulkner still managed to excel against Choate. He scored with ease, scoring seven goals against the Choate goalie, who only managed to block two of Faulkner’s nine attempts.

Thomas Choi ’16 wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “On offense, we just really needed to work on our perimeter shooting. There were multiple opportunities where we could have scored from the perimeter, but we did not capitalize on them. Additionally, the few mistakes we made on defense, Choate [was able to take] advantage of most of them.”

Choi and Darren Ty ’16 also delivered goals in Andover’s comeback attempt, scoring one goal each while finishing on critical shots from the perimeter.

Aside from Faulkner, Choi and Ty, Andover faced problems with their shots on offense. Despite an offensive stumble, Andover’s defense remained strong, locking down its opponent’s shooters.

Newcomer Nick Schoeller ’18 said, “We shut [Choate] down on defense once we were able to get in position. Most of their goals were scored off counter attacks or off quick shots from the outside.”

Andover’s resilience in the second half was undermined by careless turnovers on offense, which enabled Choate to exploit fast break opportunities and erase Andover’s one-goal lead.

Heading into its next game, Andover is altering its offensive gameplan. In practice, the team has worked on taking quicker shots, rather than continuing its previous habit of more gradual shot attempts that emphasize many passes.

Andover looks to gain its third win against Loomis this Saturday.