By Emily Feldmesser
The Ohio Wesleyan Water Polo Club provides students of all swimming levels an opportunity to play the high-endurance sport.
The club has existed at OWU for a while, but dwindled because there wasn’t enough participation to keep it going, according to sophomore Marcus Ramirez, the club’s president.
Ramirez said many swimmers who played water polo in high school, or wanted to play, participate in the club.
“I am trying to change that and get new people involved that are able to swim, but also want to learn a new sport,” he said. “…My coach in high school used to recruit basketball and baseball players because they will have the athletic ability already and would only need to learn how to tread water.”
Ramirez said new players only need to know how to swim; the rules of the game can be easily taught.
Freshman Bryce Uzzolino said he is excited to play with the OWU club because he “wants to have fun and learn how to play a new sport.”
“I have swam all my life and have played water polo for fun, so I thought it would be cool to play on a team,” he said. “It will also help keep me in shape.”
Ramirez said the club is coed because normally there are not enough women to have a women’s team.
“That is understood with other teams and during the games, the teams understand that we can keep the game coed as long as there is an equal number of women playing at a time on each team,” Ramirez said.
According to the official Olympic Games website, water polo began in the 19th century as a version of rugby played in rivers in lakes. Today, it is a “fast, tough, demanding sport.”
There are seven players on each team in a pool without a shallow end, which requires players to tread water at all times. The players aren’t allowed to touch the sides or the bottom of the pool during the game.
Ramirez said he enjoys water polo as preparation for swimming and basketball, “because it has a lot of leg and core training.”