Final 2008-09 Men's National Ranking: 17
Duke University Water Polo Club is a member of Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) and competes annually in the Atlantic Division (men) and Mid-Atlantic Division (women). The club has both men's and women's teams; men and women compete in their own tournaments throughout the year. The Atlantic Division men's regular season takes place in the fall, and the women's regular season is in the spring. The men and women compete in various invitational tournaments throughout the year as well.
Duke Water Polo Club is open to all full-time Duke undergraduate and graduate students and no formal experience is required, although previous swimming experience is helpful. Whether you’re coming to learn or play competitively, Duke Water Polo welcomes and encourages you to come out and play.
Season in Review 2007-08
With the end of the 2007-08 season, we would like to take this opportunity to share the progress of our teams. Our men’s team advanced to the Atlantic Division semifinals for the third consecutive year and finished with a 12-4 record. Meanwhile, the women’s team placed second in the Mid-Atlantic Division, advancing to the division’s championship game for the first time in team history and finishing with a 13-2 record.
While each team was delighted with its accomplishments during the league season, the highlight of our year was our week-long trip to Greece over Spring Break. In addition to sneaking a water polo ball past park police to the Acropolis for a team picture and riding mopeds across the island of Aegina, we trained with some of the best club teams in the world. Both the men’s and women’s team participated in scrimmages against squads that included members of the Greek National Team; additionally, the women placed third in the Second International Moscolios Cup.
It has also been a year of fantastic individual achievements. The men’s and women’s team combined for two first team and six second team all-region selections, Charlie Neiman and Sarah Kennifer were each selected as league players of the week during the course of their seasons, and Kennifer was selected as an Honorable Mention All-American for the second consecutive year. We are also pleased to report that the team continues to excel academically. Seventeen of our players were honored by the Collegiate Water Polo Association as Academic All-Americans, and the men’s team recorded the third-highest grade point average amongst the over 100 club programs across the country.
Ted Belsches: 2nd Team Atlantic Division
Melissa Chernick: 1st Team Mid-Atlantic Division
Cliff Cummings: 2nd Team Atlantic Division
Ashley DiSilvestro: 2nd Team Mid-Atlantic Division
Brian Itami: Mid-Atlantic Coach of the Year
Sarah Kennifer: 2nd Team Mid-Atlantic Division, Mid-Atlantic Division Player of the Week (2/10)
Charlie Neiman: 2nd Team Atlantic Division, Atlantic Division Player of the Week (10/10)
Sara Pilzer: 2nd Team Mid-Atlantic Division
17 Academic All-Americans
Duke graduate and undergraduate students are welcome to join. Experience is
preferred but by no means necessary. This fall, Duke Water Polo will be holding
both novice and experienced-player practices for those of differing skill
levels. All are encouraged to come out and see what Duke Water Polo is all
Look for us at Club Rush in the fall on East Campus, the Student Activities Fair, and in Duke University’s daily publications of the Chronicle. For more information please contact us.
Any Alumni of Duke Water Polo Club who want to get in touch with former teammates or receive information about future Alumni events are encouraged to contact Ted Belsches. We have also begun an alumni mailing list to keep interested Duke grads and water polo supporters updated on the team's progress and for the distribution of the team's gear; if you would like to join this list, please contact Brian Itami.
Make a Donation
Duke Water Polo Club is currently highly under-funded for even its most basic needs. Duke only covers 30% of our annual budget, the rest of the money comes from dues and fundraising. As the program continues to grow, it has become increasingly difficult to fund travel costs, host home tournaments, and finance purchases of new equipment that are vital for the continuation of the club. Any donations you have to offer would be greatly appreciated. Your support will serve not only to benefit those who currently participate in the program but will help decide the future of Duke Water Polo and the direction this program will take in years to come. If you are interested in supporting Duke Water Polo, please contact Ted Belsches. Thank you!