Way back in 1972 Terra Nova hired a new swim coach, Monty Iwanaga who wanted to
strengthen the entire aquatics program at Terra Nova. As part of the
overall aquatics program, Monty started the first water polo team, and
one of the founding team members was a young athletic swimmer, Bob Auleb.
Over the next seven years the program struggled as there were few
participating schools and Water Polo was not recognized as an intramural
event. Eventually with tightening funding and lack of Intramural support
the program died. Monty Iwanaga continued as head coach of the Swimming
program, and died just a few years ago on September 30, 1997.
Monty Iwanaga had a significant influence on the young Bob Auleb, who in
retrospect realized that a lot of the discipline required to play Water
Polo was key in his development as a young man. Bob returned to Terra
Nova in the spring of 2000 to coach aquatics. Remembering how water polo
had played such a significant role in his development, he decided to try
to bring Water Polo back to Terra Nova after an absence of more than 20
years. He found 11 enthusiastic volunteers in the swimming program, and
put together the first TIGERPOLO team in the fall of 2000.
the time that passed from the previous years of Water Polo, the goals
had been stored for years in the auto shop. Finally, being pressed for
space, they were thrown out. So when Coach Bob started looking for the
equipment to play water polo, all he could find was a musty old ball and
a piece of rope that had been used to mark of the pool from the previous
years of Coach Iwanaga. Not easily dissuaded from his dream of bringing
water polo back to Terra Nova, Coach Bob appealed to the parents and
friends, and the community rose to the occasion, helping to raise the
funds to buy new goals and balls.
This year marks the second season of TIGERPOLO and the program has grown to more then
35 players, as well as two assistant coaches that have
unselfishly donated their time to help in building the program. Robin
Moreno who has worked with the Terra Nova swim teams for the last
seventeen years agreed to help coach the foundling team. Robin was a
water polo player during her college years and played in the Junior
Nationals. Marne Malone was a Student Teacher in 2000 that had played
water polo and wanted to help get this program off the ground. Now back
in 2001 as a full-fledged teacher, she is still dedicating her
afternoons to helping Coach Bob and his TIGERPOLO teams.
Fandel stepped up as the Funding Chairperson and is the person to
contact if you can make a donation to the program, and our local Bank of
America has agreed to match donations 100% which effectively doubles any
of your donations.