SIX students from St Rita’s College, Clayfield are swimming with pride after they represented their school and their state admirably, seizing a string of victories in the Pan Pacific Youth Water Polo festival in Auckland, New Zealand.
Lily Carrick, Olivia Camilleri, Amelia Watt, Horatia Schlect, Murphi Merrick and Lorena Turco represented Queensland in the Under 14 and under 18 teams, both of which dominated other state and international teams including South Africa, Canada, USA, New Caledonia and New Zealand.
These victories showcased the strength of St Rita’s water polo program.
Olivia and Lily will return to Clayfield this week with Gold medals, after their U14 Queensland Maroon team won the Grand final in an intense final minute against Atlantis City, NZ.
The Kiwi girls managed to edge ahead in the first half, but Queensland fought back, levelling the game in the last quarter.
With the support of the crowd, the Maroons won the battle for the gold medal with a goal scored in the final seconds of the match.
Amelia and Horatia will also come home with medals, having beat NSW in a penalty shoot-out for the Bronze medal.
It is the largest contingent of girls from St Rita’s included in Queensland Water Polo teams in the history of the college.
The strength, depth and quality of St Rita’s water polo program has escalated since Olympian Jodie Stuhmcke took over the head coaching role two years ago.
“I’m very fortunate to have a team of positive and passionate coaches within the program and fabulous support from the school community,” Miss Stuhmcke said.
“I’m very proud of what the girls have achieved within the three years of being head coach at St Rita’s College.
“The girls have had a great season competing in both the Brisbane competition and Australian Club Nationals and subsequently rewarded for their hard work.
“My philosophy for the SRC water polo program is to provide a program that not only involves participation and fun but also improves core water polo skills to develop future representative.”
Two more students from the St Rita’s Community, including Year 12 student Lorena and 2017 student Erin, won the bronze medal in the under 18s competition.