The Lakers, coming off their first state title a year ago, believe they can repeat in 2022.
The 2021 Lake Oswego boys water polo team went where no other LO team had gone before.
The Lakers went unbeaten in the Three Rivers League regular season, ran the table in the Oregon High School Water Polo state playoffs — including a 16-7 win over crosstown rival in the state championship game — to finish their season at 35-0 with the first state crown in school history.
Now, the Lakers are ready for more of the same.
“We should win the league title,” said Lake Oswego coach Bryan Hill. “Our team is just as strong or almost as strong as last year.”
The 2022 Lakers bring back three all-Three Rivers League players and three all-state players led by TRL and state tournament MVP Carlo Cremona, senior Hudson Schneider (first-team all-league and first-team all-tournament), senior Jackson Barney (honorable mention all-league) and sophomore Kane Saur (honorable mention all-tournament).
Hill said he expects leadership and production from Cremona, Schneider and Barney, a trio that’s played together for at least four years.
“Cremona (is) one of the team captains. (He’s) very strong/physical and a good scorer with excellent field vision,” Hill said, adding that Schneider (LO’s other captain) is “very strong/physical, fast (and a) hard shooter,” while Barney is an “excellent defender and passer.”
Also ready for top-line minutes will be sophomore Henry Saur, sophomore goalie Aidan Shannon, junior Ford Bovich, junior Campbell Smith and freshman Sullevan Kirtz. The Lakers varsity will also include senior Eric Miller, junior Liam Monaghan, freshman Kai Makino, freshman Jack Tansey and freshman Hudson Willingham.
As to the 2022 Three Rivers League race — the Lakers open TRL play against Lakeridge at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 26 — Hill believes his team can win, but knows it will get tested, too.
“Newberg should be stronger than last year, and Lakeridge should be competitive as well, but I think we are still significantly stronger,” he said. “We just need to communicate and properly execute.”
See the Lakeridge preview here.