Members of the Lindbergh High School water polo team believe the school’s second-place finish at the state swimming and diving championships last fall is paying huge dividends.
The Flyers currently sit atop the Suburban West Conference standings with a 10-1 record overall and a 2-0 mark in conference play.
“Our success in swimming has really spilled over to the water polo team,” Lindbergh head coach Tim Lombardo told the Call. “We had a really good (water polo) team last year, and we’ve got a good group of seniors and a good mix of guys in the starting lineup.”
Lindbergh is riding a three-game winning streak after disposing of Kirkwood 8-2 at home last week. The Flyers came out of the first quarter April 5 with a 1-1 tie with the Pioneers before taking a 3-2 lead at halftime. But it was a three-goal outburst in the third quarter that got things going as the Flyers recorded five goals in the second half.
“We didn’t play as well in the first half as we did in the second half,” Lombardo said. “We were coming off a tough match against DeSmet the night before and Kirkwood had a tough goalkeeper that took us a while to figure out.”
Niko Filipi led the Flyers with four goals and two assists against Kirkwood. The senior two-meter man scored the team’s game-winning goal and is averaging 4.27 goals a game this season.
“Niko’s definitely one of our top players and is one of the top players in the league,” Lombardo said. “He’s so strong and really carries us at times just on his strength.”
Junior driver Teddy Key recorded two goals and one assist for the Flyers for his fifth and sixth goals this year.
“That’s a good sign for us to see Teddy be more of an offensive threat for us,” Lombardo said. “He’s really gotten a better understanding of the game and the counterattack as well.”
Sophomore driver Kyle Schnoring added to the effort with one goal and two assists against the Pioneers. He has 19 goals and 12 assists this season.
“This is Kyle’s first year on the varsity and he’s been going through some growing pains,” Lombardo said. “But in these past few games, he’s really stepped up and started playing like a varsity player.”
Senior driver Anthony Nydegger recorded his first goal of the season against Kirkwood.
The Flyers are back in the tank tonight — April 12 — in the first round of the DeSmet Invitational.