Congratulations to the boys’ varsity water polo team, winners of the 2021 Garden State Tournament! Competition was held Oct. 29-30 in at Lawrenceville. This is the eighth time Big Red has topped the tournament since its 2010 inception and fourth consecutive title.
Big Red entered the tournament with high expectations, according to head coach Julio Alcantara Martin. “We were expected to win it all … and of course we lost (6-8) in the first game against a very well coached Pingry team. Pingry stopped our fast breaks, figured out our zone defense and made few mistakes. The beauty of it was that that lost gave our kids the necessary fuel to fire them up and we dominated all the other games.”
And dominate they did. In the next rounds, Big Red dominated St. Benedict’s 16-4, then St. Peter’s 16-8 before facing Pingry again in the final and defeating the Big Blue 11-7.
In a tournament filled with Big Red highlights, Alcantara Martin said goalie Bradley Barrett ’23 ”shone particularly bright,” making some incredible saves, especially on a six-meter penalty shot. Akeil Smith ’23 led the team with 11 goals, followed by fellow Fourth Former Max Blecher with ten. Barrett made 25 saves over the four matches.
“All the coaches are incredibly proud of the team’s capacity to learn from their mistakes and come back on top!” said Alcantara Martin.
Next up for Big Red will be archrival Hill, 3:30 p.m., in Pottstown, Pa.
For additional information, please contact Lisa M. Gillard Hanson, director of Public Relations, at email@example.com.