September 11, 2003

Men's Water Polo Opens Season this Weekend

Sept. 11, 2003

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara University men's water polo team launches its season this Saturday against Chapman in La Verne at 9:30 a.m. to open the Inland Empire Classic. The Broncos will return to the pool at 4 p.m. to face La Verne and will also play two matches on Sunday.

"We are ready for the games this weekend," head coach Keith Wilbur said. "This summer we were allowed to have a club team play so a lot of guys were here this summer and playing. I think we started off this preseason in much better shape than we were last year. We have a solid freshmen class that came in and we have had a couple of good scrimmages and the team has looked solid. I am feeling good coming into our first game."

The top returning scorers for the Broncos are senior Logan Gee, junior Mark Oda, and sophomore Whit Gilfillan who combined for 80 goals last season.

Wilbur said he is looking for fifth-year senior Dan Figoni to have a big impact on the team this year. "Dan is a very good water polo player and he is also a very good leader and I think he is exactly what this team needs," Wilbur added.

"I have to say our depth is going to be our biggest strength this season," Wilbur continued. "We have a much bigger team this year than last year and now there is a lot of competition within the team to start and travel, which is good because it has the guys training really hard, but also it just gives us a bigger bench. I have a solid six starters and I have a solid six guys that can come off the bench."

At this point, Wilbur is very optimistic that fans are going to see great improvement in this year's men's water polo team. For those who can't head south this weekend, fans can see the Broncos the next two weekends in Santa Cruz. Santa Clara will open at home on October 19 against Cal Maritime.