The Toughest Goodbye


Ava Sedillo

The girls being recognized at the rally held before CIF finals.

Tere Quezada, Editoral Editor

The Millikan Girls Water Polo team has had an amazing 2022-2023 regular season. Like with all sports, there were many ups and downs, but the team has come a long way these past few years under the administration of Coach Jose Guzman.

 Last summer, June 2022, Millikan Administration and the Aquatics program were made aware of Coach Guzman’s retirement after the 22-23 season, after coaching at Millikan for a decade. As one can expect, this has been tough on the team. Some of these girls have been working with Coach Guzman for four years which makes it an even harder goodbye, given that they have built a strong bond. 

Coach Guzman recruited Alika Naone, Farrah Martin, and Sophie Garcia to support all three water polo teams. These measures have given Guzman the ability to give this last season his all and leave this chapter of his life on a positive note. He believes that the team’s success is owed to the assistant coaches, student athletes, and their dedication to the sport. 

This year, the team has moved up to Division 2, putting them against some tough Division 1 teams. This season they played Corona del Mar, Yucaipa, Huntington Beach, and Mira Costa high schools. Although these have been tough games, the team holds a record of 4-0 for Moore League and have been ranked first in division 2 for CIF

PHOTO BY Abby Akeo The girls cheering each other before a game.

“We have been ranked first since the beginning of the season. However, that doesn’t mean diddly squat unless you are successful in the postseason,” said Guzman. “Last year we got carried away, but we learned from that mistake and we are not trying to repeat the same mistakes.”

 PEACE senior and team Captain Jennine Osorio, agrees that the season has brought challenges. She believes that the girls push each other on a daily basis to be the best versions of themselves in and out of the pool. “We are all very, very close,” she said “I think what sets us apart from other teams is how much love we have for each other and how we want each and everyone of our teammates to succeed.”

These girls have been putting their blood, sweat and tears to bring home the CIF title for Millikan and Guzman’s last season. They have been putting in 25-30 hours a week of training to keep them on track and reach their goals. Coach Guzman is very proud of the team even though they didn’t win CIF, but these girls made history which is something they should carry with them forever.

Guzman leaves an amazing legacy and a group of amazing athletes with the best skill-set possible. He believes in each and every one of his athletes, and wishes the girls nothing but success, happiness, and prosperity wherever life takes them.