Boys Water Polo Suffers Three Consecutive Losses

Oliver Stabach ’26 was a starter for the first time in Andover Boys Water Polo’s game against St. John’s Prep.

Andrew Chinn ’24 battles a St. John’s Prep opponent.

After adjusting lineups due to illness, Andover Boys Water Polo lost on Wednesday in a home game against St. John’s Prep (the Prep). The loss follows two consecutive losses against Williston Northampton (Williston) and Greenwich Country Day School (GCDS) in a doubleheader on Saturday. The team’s current record is 1-5.

According to Jeffrey Lim ’27, Williston proved to be tough competition as they brought forth a strong offense. Lim credits player Raphael Sibuet ’24, who scored several goals during the Williston match. Despite Sibuet’s contributions, the team ultimately lost by one point. 

Lim said, “The team played great overall. The only problem we had was adjusting our defense to their offense, and that’s what led to them winning.”

After their two losses against Williston and Taft, the team assessed their areas of strengths and weaknesses. Zach Godsey ’25 emphasized the team’s growth mindset, analyzing tactics that worked and what made the conditions less than ideal. 

There’s lots of room for improvement, everywhere, always. There’s never not room for improvement. We definitely did not play our best. It didn’t help that we were in a smaller pool, and it was a little bit cramped in the shallow end,” said Godsey.

According to Godsey, the team’s one-point loss against Williston lowered team spirit. After a series of losses, the team hopes to build a more positive mindset, especially on days with back-to-back double headers. 

The team was down, and tired, and that greatly impacted our play before we got smoked by GCDS. So, that’s something we want to work on is getting the right headspace for the next game,” said Godsey.

According to Sean Niu ’25, the coaches utilize a method that helps players stay focused after a difficult loss. The strategy allows players to feel any negative emotions from the previous game, but signifies the importance of working through the loss and correcting mistakes.

So the coach has this concept of a two-minute pity party where we can be mad at ourselves for two minutes, but go right back into our game face and come back strong,” said Niu.

Godsey highlighted players Oliver Stabach ’26, who was a starter in Wednesday’s game against the Prep, and Captain Jonathan Ji ’24 who scored crucial goals in the game. 

I want to highlight Oliver Stabach… Oliver, who usually comes off the bench, started [Wednesday]. He stepped up, and I thought he played a good game. He played great defense, swam well. Jonathan Ji, our captain, scored some very important goals, and played a great game, too,” said Godsey.

The team plans to focus its attention on building a better headspace going into another doubleheader on Saturday. Godsey noted that Andover will also continue to work on its pacing throughout the game as the season progresses. 

Godsey said, “Patience is the biggest thing. We rush and make plays we are not supposed to. We take bad shots. Slowing it down, looking around, being patient, these are all things we can work on going into these upcoming games.”

Andover will host Choate Rosemary Hall and Hamden Hall on Saturday.