Men’s water polo’s Jonny Rimlinger had an impressive freshman season last fall — scoring 31 goals and earning a place for himself on the Western Water Polo Association’s All-Freshman team. With his sophomore season put on hold by COVID-19, Asst. Sports Editor Nick Rossi met with Jonny via Zoom to talk about his experience heading into the academic year.
Nick Rossi (N.R.): What was your initial reaction to the WCC putting fall sports on hold?
Jonny Rimlinger (J.R.): I was pretty bummed. It was kind of a bummer but also a little of a relief too. It was kind of hard while everything was closed to train for water polo. So if we had a season in the fall, I’d imagine most water polo players would be very out of shape.
N.R.: How do you think the pause will affect your team heading into the season?
J.R.: I think it might affect us pretty positively. It kind of allows everyone, since we had such a long break, [to start at] ground zero again. And we still have this entire semester to train towards our season, so it's kind of good to get everyone on the same page.
N.R.: As a part of the WWPA All-Freshmen team last year, how are you looking to build upon your freshman season?
J.R.: Last season, I wasn’t expecting to really play at all. I was just hoping to be on the team. So this season I’m going to have a lot more confidence. [I’m] working on shooting, passing the ball, I think I’m going to be more of a distributor this year. Next season I’m going to work to up my assist totals a little bit more. I just think coming in with so much more confidence is going to be very beneficial for next season.
N.R.: What are you looking forward to most about hopefully eventually returning back to campus?
J.R.: Playing U.C. Davis. I want to beat U.C. Davis so badly. Last year watching them win [the Western Water Polo Association championship], we watched the game when we were on the pool deck. Watching them celebrate, I don’t know, it just hit something deep. I just want to absolutely crush them.