The Geraldton Water Polo Association was well represented at the Australian Youth Water Polo Championships, sending both an under-18s boys and girls team to Brisbane from January 5-10. The under-18s boys team was coached by Daniel Prout and managed by Brendon Hagan, while the girls side was coached by Emma Smith, with Michelle Prout managing. The boys’ team had a mixed bag of results, securing a commendable victory along with a few setbacks. Despite the challenges, boys’ team captain Jimmy Horsman said the experience was invaluable. “(The Australian Youth Championship) is such a great experience for everyone that came down from Geraldton to play in a different competition. It will be something for the whole team to look back on and bring into the home competition,” he said. “In Geraldton we all don’t actually play with each other, so after the first two games we definitely gelled as a team and put up a good fight in all the games.” Horsman’s impressive individual performance included nine goals, while Leo Prout emerged as the top scorer with 14 goals. The highlight of the boys’ competition was the well-earned victory over Canberra Dolphins Gold 14-12, with Prout, Lachlan Crawford and Callum Sojan combining for nine of the goals. The girls’ team achieved outstanding results with three convincing wins under the charge of captain Evie Prout, who also claimed the top scorer title. She said she was delighted with the team’s overall performance and the experience. “We had so much fun at AYC. The team made the trip so enjoyable, we all learnt so much from the games,” Prout said. “I personally got a few new tricks from my position as centre forward so that will be great to take back to Geraldton. It was great to lead such a good, strong team and stoked to get three good wins.” The girls finished the tournament with a superb win against Hunter Hurricanes, taking a 10-7 victory, with Saskia Newman, Sophia Kalazich and Prout nabbing eight goals between them.