SPRINGFIELD, Va., Aug. 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The St. James today announced the launch of its water polo program, offering athletes across the Greater Washington region the area's most comprehensive water polo development program. The program, led by former USA Water Polo Olympic Development Program Coach Leslie Entwistle, will provide session training tailored to all ages and skill levels as well as private and group lessons, water polo-specific strength and conditioning, camps, clinics, leagues and tournaments at the 450,000 sq. ft. complex set to open in September 2018.
"We're building an aquatics program that's unrivaled in its breadth and quality, and our water polo program is a central part of this exceptional programming for athletes and water sports enthusiasts across the region," said Kendrick Ashton, co-founder and co-CEO of The St. James. "We are confident Leslie's wealth of experience as an elite player and coach and passion for the sport will inspire explosive growth in participation in water polo, and we are proud to be leading that growth."
Entwistle brings two decades of experience in leading water polo programs to her position as director of water polo at The St. James. Most recently, she served as head club coach and program director at Capital DC Water Polo Club, where she led the development of a full-scale youth water polo program and collaborated with national club directors to build National Junior Olympic Championships teams annually. Entwistle also previously served as girls head coach and developmental boys coach for USA Water Polo's Olympic Development Program Northeast Zone (NEZ). During her time there, she coached teams to national victories, including a 3rd place win by her NEZ Girls 14 & Under team at the Olympic Development Program National Championships in 2016 and 2012 and 2013 wins for the NEZ Boys 8th Grade & Under team at the East vs. West Zone Championships. She was named Olympic Development Program East USA / West USA Developmental Boys Co-Coach of the Year in 2013.
Before joining USA Water Polo, Entwistle was an assistant age group water polo coach at the Naval Academy Aquatics Club, where she helped coach 14-under teams to multiple Top 10 national titles and was named USA Water Polo Development Coach of the Year in 2010. She also served as an instructor and head women's water polo coach at California State University, East Bay, where she led the team to its first NCAA DIII Top 10 ranking.
As an athlete, Entwistle was a standout swimmer and water polo player at Slippery Rock University, where she was a six-time All American in swimming and three-time All-American in water polo. She was inducted into the College Water Polo Hall of Fame in 2010. She also competed as a member of the USA Women's Water Polo National Team in the 1978 World Games and the 1979 and 1981 FINA World Cups.
"I'm thrilled to be continuing to coach players to their highest potential in water polo through this unparalleled program at The St. James," Entwistle said. "I've worked and played at the highest levels of the sport, and there's nothing quite like what we're doing here. Athletes will have every resource needed to meet their goals and compete among the very best all under one roof."
Modeled on the USA Water Polo Development Program, The St. James Water Polo Program offers players the opportunity to progressively hone their skills in the pool and excel and enjoy the sport through every stage of life. Athletes in the water polo program will have access to top-notch coaching, an Olympic-sized pool, a high-performance training center for water polo-specific strength and conditioning work, onsite sports medicine care from MedStar's world-class clinicians and more. Highlights of the program's offerings include:
- Splashball/Discovery for players ages 5 to 12 to learn the basics of the game
- Co-ed developmental courses for beginners to elite competitors ages 6-18
- Camps, clinics and tournaments
- Youth and adult leagues
- Adult training courses for all skill levels, from beginners to veteran athletes
- Adult/Youth private, semi-private and small group lessons for more individualized skill development
The St. James will host its grand opening on September 15, 2018. For more information, please contact The St. James sales studio at 703.239.6870.
About The St. James
The St. James, the premier sports, wellness and active entertainment destination brand in the country, is set to open a flagship 450,000-square foot complex on a 20-acre campus in Fairfax County, Virginia in September 2018. The complex will offer the most comprehensive combination of sports and wellness venues and programming, lifestyle amenities and family centered active entertainment in the country. For more information, please visit thestjames.co.
SOURCE The St. James