March 27, 2019, by llyad10
BUCS Big Wednesday | Water Polo make a splash as they win the Men’s and Women’s Trophy finals
Women’s water polo trophy final
First to arrive at bright and early at David Ross Sports Village on the morning of the 27th was women’s water polo. The team were focussed and ready for a great game against Oxford in their home pool. Having dominated the Midlands 1A league this season, not losing a single game, the girls weren’t prepared to start losing now. Captain Anna Lord was first to get into the pool to show Oxford that green and gold meant business.
University of Nottingham Women’s Water Polo Team
Anna Lord (C)
The game began with a fast tussle and a frustrated shout from Abilgail as Oxford stole the first ball of the match. Their possession didn’t last long, and Abigail was soon to get her own back, scoring several runaway goals in quick succession. After just five minutes Nottingham lead by 7 – 0.
As the timer counted down Nottingham maintained possession; fighting the ball away from Oxford, getting interceptions in before they had a chance to score. Julie Swieca and Katelyn Fairchild were powering in the shots and the score steadily crept up. Thanks to their early lead, Nottingham were able to cool their attack and slow down into set plays. The first half ended at a comfortable 2 – 22 and the spectators showed their appreciation with a song.
After the game, captain Anna Lord commented on the efforts of the team. “We’ve had a really good season and this is the cherry on top of the cake! We lost two years ago against Exeter so it’s nice to finally finish with a win”. The team now look forward to the premiership play offs, where they will play at a higher intensity and hope to gain more wins for green and gold.
Men’s water polo trophy final
The men’s water polo team won a very tough semi-final game against Sheffield Hallam University and so came into the final confident they could win again. They were focussed on defending their previous title and winning the Trophy final at home for a second year in a row. With an easy win for the women’s water polo team earlier in the day, the pressure was on the boys to get gold.
University of Nottingham Men’s Water Polo team
Mostafa Ashraf Esmail
Samuel Alberici (C)
Action of play
The excitement from spectators could be felt as soon as you stepped onto poolside. On a high from the girl’s previous success, the crowd were ready for another win and with two quick goals scored by Nottingham in the first few minutes it looked like a win was on the horizon. Exeter weren’t going to go down easily and Nottingham had to fight to get to a first quarter 1 – 6 lead. From then, the gap only got larger as players such as captain Sam Alberici and first year Matthias Madden fired in the shots. By half time the score was 2 – 11 to green and gold.
During the second half Exeter just couldn’t close the gap. A highlight of the second half was a shot from green and gold in the last moment of a 30 second attack, the ball nestled into the top corner as the buzzer sounded. After an exciting match, Nottingham were crowned Trophy champions with a score of 8 – 28.
In a post-match interview with captain Sam Alberici he described how the hard work doesn’t stop now, “We still have two very tough play-off games. One of our matches is against Sheffield Hallam again, who we only just beat in the semi-final, so to get promoted we really need to play well against them. Last year we won the final but lost the play offs so this year we’re not taking anything for granted. We’re straight back to training really hard for those games”.
Summary of action
Commenting on the success of his two teams today, head coach Sam Joyce said, “Both of our teams really dominated from the beginning and both had basically won by half time. For the teams to have done so well it definitely spurs hope for the play offs”.