The San Lorenzo Valley High School pool will be playing host the 2014 USA Water Polo National Junior Olympics, which are set to begin on Saturday, July 26, and continue until Sunday, Aug. 3.

Athletes and teams from around the country come together to compete in the USA Water Polo Junior Olympics, making this nation's biggest age-group water polo tournament.

Over a four-day period, more than 640 teams will be competing in either the Championship Division or the Classic Division, depending on age category.  There will be four schools helping, San Lorenzo Valley High School, Aptos High School, Santa Cruz High School and Cabrillo College.

There are five different age categories for both boys and girls: The oldest category is for 18-year-olds and under; the middle is 14 and under; and the youngest is 10 and under.

However, the age groups that will be playing at SLV will only be 18 and under, 16 and under, and 14 and under.

There will be approximately 15 games per day, beginning at 7 a.m. and ending at approximately 7:30 p.m. The admission will be $5 per guest.

Beginning on Saturday, July 26, the 18 and under Boys' Classic will start, and continue through till Tuesday, July 29. 

Then, the 16 and under Girls' Classic will begin on Thursday, July 31, followed by the 18 and under Girls' Classic on Friday, Aug. 1.

The final game to be hosted at the SLV pool will be on Saturday, Aug. 2, when the 14 and under Girls' Championship game will take place.

The money raised from the Junior Olympics at SLV will be donated directly to the San Lorenzo Valley Athletics Department.

The money will then be used to help promote each sport offered at the school, through the purchasing of new equipment, maintaining facilities, buying uniforms and other materials to help student athletes.

“This event will be helping all the sports teams at the high school,” said Varsity Water Polo Coach, Wally Brondstatter.

This event is being run on a volunteer basis, with dedicated parents and community members are coming out to help run the tournament. There will be several members working the scoreboard, and helping with admission, while others will be serving food out of the snack shack.

Dawn Townsend has been volunteering for the athletics department, and helping run the snack shack whenever she can, and said that she helps out because this event is what helps pay for the sports at SLV.

“Most schools are pay-to-play,” said Townsend, meaning that students have to pay to play the sport that they want.

At SLV, however, students can simply begin playing by filling out the required paperwork and trying out.

“I volunteer at this event because it makes a lot of money for the school, it's important to support my local community, and our children,” said Townsend.

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