DANVILLE, Calif. (KRON) — For teenagers thinking about joining one Bay Area high school’s boys water polo team, trying out this year is not for the faint of heart.
Young athletes who make it past tryouts at San Ramon Valley High School in Danville will be swimming from Alcatraz Island to San Francisco as their first team challenge.
On August 13, the water polo players will join Team Hydro and charge into Alcatraz’s icy-cold waters as part of the 18th-annaul Alcatraz Swim for Hydrocephalus Research.
“My brother and I both played water polo at San Ramon in the 90s and early 00’s. So to see the team rally around the cause like this really means a lot,” said Peter Finlayson, Team Hydro co-founder. “Our sister, Kate, loved swimming, but unfortunately her life was cut short by hydrocephalus. To see these young men willing to look beyond themselves and support the cause like this is inspiring.”
Swimming from “The Rock” requires a swimmer to navigate rough, choppy, and cold waters with strong currents for two miles.
San Ramon Valley High School hopes to contend for East Bay Athletic League and North Coast Section titles again this season. Their coach, Jeff Mayers, said he wanted to challenge the team early in the season while also making a positive difference.
“As soon as I heard about Team Hydro and the amazing research they are funding, I knew that it was something we’d love to be a part of,” Mayers said. “Our team is hoping to be able to raise at least $7,500 towards the overall event goal of $75,000. We have over a dozen Wolves signed-up so far, and I’ve decided to take the plunge myself as well.”