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Women’s water polo to face first CWPA tournament

April 20, 2012

The Crab People are not the only ones splashing in the water this water polo season. The women’s water polo team has taken over the pool with their first ever appearance in the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA).

The women’s team has been around for three years, but this is the first year they have become members of the CWPA.

Over the past two months, the team has held a 2-6 record, with two of those wins coming from their second home meet last weekend. The Lady Crabs netted a win over St. Mary’s University with a score of 20-7 and their second against Augustana, 13-5. With those two wins, Monmouth was given the 9th seed position of 13 in this weekend’s Heartland Division tournament.

Because the Midwest Conference does not compete in men’s or women’s water polo, the women joined the CWPA, a non-profit athletic conference comprised of four-year colleges and universities. This conference is comprised of both varsity and collegiate club programs which compete for a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) or National Collegiate Club (NCCC) Championship.

In the conference, though, the women see some familiar faces in their division, joining conference opponents Grinnell, Illinois College and Knox.

Alumna Sally Hayes, Erica McAloon and Rachel Holm started the women’s water polo program because of their close involvement with the men’s team.

“We saw all of the accomplishments of the men’s team and wanted to create our own opportunities as well,” said McAloon.

The team has grown in the past three years with a roster of 14 women, their largest team yet.

McAloon serves as senior captain while Claire McGuire leads as junior captain. Sophomore Chris Falkenrath coaches the team.

“I hope that more girls will see what we are accomplishing and support us,” said McAloon. “I also hope that our team continues to be as competitive as we are, if not more competitive and passionate about the sport in general.”

The team practices at least four times per week, practicing plays to get the team used to game situations.

The women’s polo team will travel to Grinnell, Iowa this weekend for the Heartland Division tournament. There, they will face number 8 seed Iowa State. The winner of that competition will face Lindenwood, the number 1 seed.

Kyla Quigley/The Courier

Junior captain Claire McGuire pulls back to shot at Thursday’s practice. The team will travel to Grinnell, Iowa this weekend for their first ever appearance at the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) conference tournament.

Kelsey Beshears
Sports Editor

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