On Wednesday, October 4th, the Panthers faced Menlo-Atherton, the number one team in the Bay League for water polo, a 13-4 loss for the Panthers.
Facing M-A, the Panthers arrived to the game with a feeling of dread.
“I think we came out and we were mentally defeated,” said junior Fenn Jones. “I don’t think it was a talent thing: I think we came out and defeated ourselves. We gave out just after the first goal, and because of that, we allowed them to roll all over us.”
“I think it was a mentality issue,” said varsity boys water polo coach, Austin Carr. “Our team didn’t show up as focused as they have for previous competitions and it was just a mental breakdown.”
Luckily, goalie Davor Koprivic was able to play in goal during the game, and has made a speedy recovery since last week. However, Carr commented on Koprivic’s uneasiness during the game.
“I think that our goalie Davor, as much as he fought through adversity today to play, had doubt from that injury in his mind and for whatever reason we just weren't there mentally, and I think that was the deciding factor.”
But despite this halt in their momentum, the panthers remain optimistic.
“Sometimes it's good to take a loss, to know what it’s like to go towards a game with a negative or losing mentality,” captain Jacob Chudnovsky said. “I’m hoping that next week when we play menlo, we’re gonna have the opposite mentality and learn from today.
The Panthers have a bye week, so on October 18th they play against Menlo, another high ranking school in the Bay League.
As a final note, Carr said, “I know that [Menlo] is not that far behind [M-A]. It’ll be an opportunity to get our feet back under us, and get the momentum going again for the team but it’ll be another tough contest, and they gotta show up, they gotta stay focused, and they gotta put it all together on game day.”