As a former member of the Andover Girls Waterpolo team herself, Coach Jill Meyer leads the team with experience and energy. According to Cassidy Sadowski ’22, Meyers’ experience makes her a knowledgeable and focused coach.
Sadowski said, “Coach Meyer is easily the best water polo coach that I have ever had. She is both very knowledgeable and focused and very caring, and honest. I think that those qualities really strongly contribute to the atmosphere of our team. Coach Meyer played water polo at Andover, and I think she’s really [has a good] understanding of what worked with the team.”
According to Meyer, she believes she fulfills the role of being a supporting coach by connecting with players not just through the sport, but through all aspects of life.
“I think a good coach is one that recognizes that there is more to their players than their sport. Being able to connect with students on and off of the pool deck and appreciate the strengths and talents to the team as people, not just players, is really important to me as a coach. I try to show up for concerts, plays, performances, presentations as much as possible. Our players show up for us and our sport day in and day out, so it’s nice to be able to do the same in return,” Meyer wrote in an email to The Phillipian.
Mia Wonacott ’24 shares a similar sentiment as Meyer, as she believes that the coach always maintains patience towards the team despite the challenging season.
“Coach Meyer just has such a positive impact on the team. I love having her as my coach. Again, with the tough season, we came in as a bunch of newbies kind of, we all kind of didn’t know how to play and she was super patient with us. Super kind and helpful, and never made us feel like we were doing something wrong. She always had a smile on her face, no matter what,” said Wonacott.
According to Sadowski, Meyer never fails to help teammates improve upon their weaknesses with her constant support.
Sadowski said, “She would always remind us to play our game and look at our improvements both throughout that game and throughout to see them because so many people came in knowing nothing. She always was very open about how proud of the growth she saw.”
As a coach, Meyer expressed that she is most proud of her ability to support her teammates and ensure that they know that she is always there for them.
“What I am most proud of in myself as a coach is that my players know that I am there for them 100%. Whether they’re having a tough day or a tough practice, they know that I am there to support them and cheer them on. While we had a tough season, we always found things to celebrate and moments to be proud of. I think it’s important to continuously set a tone of positivity and faith in the team, even when games don’t shake out the way you hope they might,” wrote Meyer.