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Rocklin High student/athlete makes national team Deck: Thunder water polo star takes her training to new level Rocklin High student/athlete makes national team Rocklin High student/athlete makes national team Deck: Thunder water polo star takes her traini

Thunder water polo star takes her training to new level Thunder water polo star takes her training to new level
By: Amanda Calzada Placer Herald Correspondent
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If one misses 100 percent of the shots never taken, then a new opportunity is especially worth a shot. Aelish Guinn, daughter of Teresa and Dan Guinn, now has the opportunity to represent Rocklin and California as a member of the National 16-U Womens Water Polo team. “I was technically learning to play polo before I knew how to swim. I held on to the ball to float,” said Guinn, who remembers learning water polo in Hawaii at age 5 through her mom’s friend. The 15-year-old star was recently drafted on the roster after completing various training camps, followed by regional training in Clovis, Calif., and finally, a national selection camp in Long Beach, Calif. The entire selection process spanned over a six month period. Guinn earned one of the 50 spots on the national 16-U roster, making her both a promising and skilled young player for her return to the Thunder for her second season in the fall. Last school year, Guinn maintained a 3.9 non-weighted grade-point-average. “Aelish is remarkably modest for being such a skillful player. She never holds grudges and always does her best to help the team,” said Rocklin High teammate Ana Shuler. Last year, Guinn was the only freshman on Rocklin’s varsity team and held positions of center defender and attacker. When Guinn isn’t playing for the Thunder, she plays for Sacramento Water Polo coached by Bruce Hastie and Scott Decker. She integrates Olympic Development Program practices and national team training camps, which are held in Los Angeles, into her schedule. The athlete also swims competitively for the Wolverine Aquatics Club coached by Chris Breitbart. In the past 10 years, Guinn has also built a swimming resumé, beginning her aquatic career at the Rocklin Wave as a child. Guinn’s mother also was a swimmer and water polo player. Her athletic experience on club teams throughout high school and college earned her a spot on the Youth National team and the Junior National West team. “She understands the sport and knows what it takes to be a good player,” said Guinn, whose two younger brothers also play for Sacramento Water Polo. Next year, Guinn’s goal is to qualify for the national traveling team to compete in events such as the Pan American Youth Championships. “I’m training to be the best water polo player and teammate that I can be, if that eventually makes me good enough to play in the Olympics then I’d love to play,” she said. E-mail Placer Herald Sports at jiml@goldcountrymedia.com