Entering his first year on the team as a new Lower, Neil Simpson ’19, from Beaurepaire, Quebec, has been a vital asset for Andover Boys Water Polo this season.
Although Simpson’s main sport is swimming, he brings nine years of water polo expertise to the team. His offensive techniques benefit the team immensely.
“Neil’s key strength is his shot. It is one of the strongest on our team and we use it to our advantage in every game,” said teammate Jacob Hudgins ’19.
Co–Captain Daniel Tran ’17 added, “His ability to easily get around defenders and fire a rocket shot from anywhere in the pool makes him such a valuable player to have.”
Due to Simpson’s fantastic offensive performance thus far, he has been named The Phillipian’s Athlete of the Week.
When did you start playing the sport?
“I started playing water polo at my local summer pool when I was eight years old. I quickly fell in love with the sport and have been playing ever since. Growing up playing at a pool in my small town is very different to playing for Andover but it is also very exciting.”
What position do you play?
“I play left flat which basically means I stand by the goal and shoot.”
What do you enjoy about water polo?
“I love that water polo combines two passions of mine: rugby and swimming. The physicality required in addition to fitness and speed in the pool make a great combination.”
What is different about Andover’s team to your team back home?
“Andover’s team has a lot more complex system of play than my old team. The players are all quick learners, which means we can easily cover more complicated strategies. We have already begun implementing some great plays into our gameplay.”
How would you describe the energy of the team and the team itself?
“We’re a fun team but we’re also a really attentive team. We really listen to everything Coach Dan tells us. There is a really fun dynamic. We’re always having a good time, whether it be the bus rides, on the bench or in a game.”
What have you been focusing on most this season?
“Lately we have been focusing most of our energy on our ‘man up’ situations. We’ve struggled to score goals all year with the extra man and are trying to fix this.”