Meet the Captains: Girls’ Water Polo – Paige Geary ’19

No stranger to the Bishop’s or any other pool, Paige has played water polo on and off since she was about 10 years old. That strong experience led her to become a member of the Knights’ varsity squad for all four years of upper school competition. She has had to balance the time in the water with the demands of Bishop’s academics and is currently taking both AP Psychology and Spanish. Throw in all the added requirements of college applications and preparation, and Paige has been one really busy person. Even so, she finds some time to do some of her favorite things, like hang with her friends and hit the beach. No matter what she decides, Paige’s career at Bishop’s has included at least two CIF championships and there is always the possibility of regaining that crown one more time in 2019. 

What makes water polo so special to you and why do you love the game? 
“Our team is probably one of the closest teams on campus – we spend a lot of time together out of season – so I love that aspect of it. Also, we have a great coaching staff. I’ve known Doug (Peabody) and Ian (Davidson) since I was really young and I’ve spent a lot of time with them. Water polo is a pretty aggressive sport so you can spend a lot of time getting out your anger, if you need to. Swimming is also really relaxing.”
 
Who have been the biggest influences in your water polo career?
“Doug and Ian. Doug has been my coach at Bishop’s since my freshman year, when I played very little freshman and sophomore year. Junior year, we lost five of our seniors so it was a lot of pressure for everyone. But talking to them and being close to them was really helpful.”
 
What does it mean to you to be selected as team captain? 
“My sophomore year, we had five team captains and then last year, we only had one. Going into this year, there were big expectations after Ari (Bockstahler ‘18), who is a great person we all knew really well. She was great all-around so there was a lot of pressure for me going in to this year. But leading the team is an honor. These girls are my favorite people in the whole world.”
 
What do you think makes a good team captain? 
“I think a good team captain is someone that you can look up to and you’re able to talk to outside of school. After I graduate, I hope all of these girls know they can still talk to me about anything, even if it’s not water polo related.”
 
What are the biggest challenges playing water polo?
“It’s the mental aspect of it rather than the physical. It can be complicated but you have to keep pushing yourself and push through it even if it gets aggressive and it gets physical.” 
 
Why should people consider joining the girls’ water polo team?
“Like I said before, we’re one of the closest teams on campus. We love each other a lot and we’ve gotten to know each other a lot over the past few years. That relationship is a big part of it and I think that’s a big reason to join the team.” 
 
This year, the team has played some of the best teams in California. How has that experienced helped the team?
“Last weekend, we played Orange Lutheran for the second time. The first time we played them, we lost by a lot but we knew what we had to work on. In the second game, we tied with them and went to overtime. We lost in overtime but we had to learn how to perfect everything and just do our best.” 
 
What has been your favorite sports experience at Bishop’s?
“My freshman and sophomore year, watching those girls play in the CIF games, even though I didn’t get to play, was really special to me. Also, every year, we go to Santa Barbara and play a few games and do a lot of bonding. We go to a thrift store, we all dress up and then we go to the movies and that’s always one of my favorite experiences every year.” 
 
What motivates you?
“Definitely my teammates. We push each other when we know we need to and when one girl isn’t trying, including myself, we know we have to step up and keep going, even if you’re tired. People are pretty honest with themselves if they need a break. But we know we need to keep showing up and doing your best.”
 
What were your goals going into the season and how is it going so far?
“With the seven freshmen that we have, a lot of the goals were to just grow as a team and grow together and improve our playing, and I think we’ve done a really good job of that.” 
 
Where is the coolest place you’ve ever visited?
“A couple years ago, I got to go to China, which is the only time I’ve been out of the country except for visiting Mexico, and it was really cool. We went for a family friend’s wedding and it was definitely the coolest place I’ve been.” 
 
What’s your favorite movie?
“I don’t have one off the top of my head but every year when we go to Santa Barbara as a team, we watch a sports movie and this year, we watched “McFarland USA” and that was a really good time. We created a lot of inside jokes as a team about that and we all really enjoyed it.”
 
What’s your favorite type of food? 
“I’d have to go with a burrito.”
 
Do you have any final reflections of your time at Bishop’s?
“Since I’ve been here, it’s been great. There are a lot of the same people so it’s important to be open to new things and open to change so that you can experience everything there is, even though it is a small school.”
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The Bishop’s School is an independent, coeducational college-preparatory day school for students in grades six through twelve who live throughout San Diego County. Founded in 1909, the School is affiliated with the Episcopal church.