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ILLPOLO.COM


Player of the Year


Choosing the "best" player during any water polo season is a difficult task, as several players provide their respective teams with a variety of different skills and qualities. One easy way to make the selection is to simply choose the top performer from the title-winning team, which is what I have done below in naming the Illpolo.com 2013 Player of the Year award winners:

BOYS
Matt Bresnahan/Matt Farmer (Fenwick)
The impact of Matt Farmer's return to the Fenwick lineup was obvious, as they beat Lyons in a sectional final and won three straight state tournament games to reclaim the state title with him leading the way on both ends of the pool. The situation was a unique one to say the least, as he missed half the season due to injury. During that time, it was fellow senior Matt Bresnahan who kept things together for the Friars to the tune of 86 regular-season goals. Bresnahan also scored nine goals in the team's three state tournament wins, while Farmer tallied seven scores. Therefore, the duo end the season as Illpolo.com's 2013 Co-Players of the Year.
 

 


GIRLS
Becky Insalaco (St Ignatius)
There is no denying the impact Becky Insalaco made for St Ignatius as the Wolfpack won their won their first state title. She surpassed the 100-goal mark at the state tournament despite the team only playing 24 regular season games. She racked up 13 goals in three wins at the event, scoring 6 times in a quarterfinal win over Naperville Central, netting 3 scores in an 8-7 semifinal round victory over McAuley, and notching 4 scores in the team's 12-9 win over Lincoln-Way Central in the state finals.

 

All that is impressive, but one needs to simply take a look at her impact in the state championship game to see how involved she is with everything the Wolfpack do on the offensive end. Insalaco scored 4 goals, assisted on four others, and drew six major fouls, including two penalties that Tammy Stelnicki converted. All told, she played a direct role in 10 of the team's 12 goals. One of the team's other two goals came when she was double-teamed and lost possession, which allowed Stelnicki to pick up the loose ball and score while her defender was worried about stopping Insalaco. Count that as an "assist" and that makes it a direct role in 11 of the team's 12 goals. And that impact is the reason she ends the season as Illpolo.com's 2013 Player of the Year.

 

 

 

 

 

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