Volume 2:  Number 10           February 1, 2008

US National Men's and Women's Water Polo Players or Coaches

Each month a playeror coach from a US National Men's Team and a playeror coach from a US National Women's Team will give the water polo community some tips on how to play a particular position or a fundamental skill. In turn WPP will post a photograph and concise biography to help the water polo community get to know the players and coaches.

Goalie Tactics by Merrill Moses

I believe that the most important key to being a successful goalkeeper is to have strong legs, without strong legs you will not be able to react as quickly to the ball.  You must work on your leg strength every day. Here are some drills that I use to keep my legs in good shape. 

  • I use weighted balls and hold them over my head, one of the key things when you are doing this though is not to stay in one place, it is best to move side to side in the goal while using weighted balls to work on your lateral movement.

  • Another drill I do is use a 5 gallon arrowhead bottle and fill it up in the water then hold it over your head and empty it, you can also move laterally while doing this as well.

  • Another leg strength drill is to use a bunge that straps around your waist and eggbeater away from the wall that it is tied to as far as you can go. You should hold your position for at least 45 seconds once you have reached the point where you cannot go any further forward.  You can also do sets of lunges once you have reached the point where the band is fully stretched out.

Proper technique on your lunges and lobs are also a important key to being a successful goalkeeper. When you are practicing your lunges make sure that you are using your off hand to help you push yourself to that corner.  You also have to make sure that you are throwing you arm as hard as you can to that corner, you cannot go half speed, even if you are lunging past the corner it is better then not making it to the corner at all.  Lobs are a little more complicated, if you are on the right side of the goal and someone is trying to lob on you, you must first throw your left arm back into the goal, then take a split second pause and then with that hand that you threw back pull with it and then do one big breast stroke kick, and throw your right arm across your body to the upper corner.  Remember it is a lob, you have more time then you think, the split second pause is important.

The last key ingredient to becoming a successful goalkeeper is to be a leader in the water, I think the goalkeeper position is very similar to the quarterback position in football.  Rember that because you are in the goal you can see the whole pool, your teamates cannot.  You must talk to your teammates and let them know what is going on and where you want them to be.  Especailly when they are putting an arm up for field blocking.  Look forward to seeing you all on the pool deck


Merrill Moses

INTERNATIONAL/CLUB: Is one of the most exciting goalkeepers in the game today…Is explosive to both sides of the cage…Known for his vocal leadership in the pool as well as his game play…Named Best Goalkeeper at 2006 ASUA Cup… Highest number of saves in 2006 Premier League Division I… Was named the Most Valuable Goalkeeper at the 2003 U.S. Cup at Stanford…Posted a game-high 13 saves against Slovakia at 2003 French International… Was named as the 1st Team All-American goalkeeper with New York at the 2002 Men’s Senior Nationals…Had 63 saves in six games during the 2002 FINA World League, including back-to-back 13-stop efforts against Russia.

PROFESSIONAL: Played in the Spanish professional league in 2000-01 with Olivar of Zaragosa, Spain.

COLLEGE: In 1998, he earned 1st Team All-Conference and 2nd Team All-American honors at Pepperdine...Earned 1st Team All-American distinction in 1997...Was MVP at the 1997 NCAA Championships for Pepperdine.

PERSONAL: Enjoys snowboarding, scuba diving and cooking…Played the
saxophone and viola during high school…Likes having Jamba Juice before a big game because you can’t be too full as a goalie… Got involved with water polo during the summer before his freshman year of water polo because he didn’t want to play football in the heat.

2006 ASUA Cup, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1st place
2006 FINA World League Super Finals, Athens, Greece, 5th Place
2003 World University Games, Daegu, South Korea, 8th place
2003 FINA World League Super Finals, New York, NY, 3rd place
2003 U.S. Cup, Stanford, CA, United States, 2nd place
2002 FINA World Cup, Belgrade, Yugoslavia, 7th place
2002 Unicum Cup, Budapest, Hungary, 4th place
2001 FINA World Championships, Fukuoka, Japan, 7th place
1999 World University Games, Palma de Mallorca Spain, 4th place

(Biography and Photograph provided courtesy of USA Water Polo)

US Women's Water Polo Team

The US Women's Tips will be suspended until next September after the 2008 Olympic Games so they can concentrate their time, energy and effort on doing what no other US Olympic Water Polo Team has accomplished and that is winning an Olympic gold medal.

(Biography and Photograph provided courtesy of USA Water Polo)