BRIDGEPORT, Pa. — United States (USA) Water Polo Hall of Fame member/former USA and Brazilian National Team head coach Sandy Nitta is the guest on Episode 013 of the PoloCAST Podcast with George Gross, Jr.
A biweekly series highlighting some of water polo’s best minds and athletes over the past 50+ years, PoloCAST is available on Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Anchor and Spotify.
Hosted by CWPA Hall of Fame inductee and former Team Canada Olympian George Gross, Jr., the podcast provides listeners with more than just an X’s and O’s conversation about water polo – but a dialogue about what helped good players, coaches and administrators reach the top of the game.
New episodes release on the first and third Tuesday of every month.
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About Sandy Nitta: The recipient of the 2012 International Swimming Hall of Fame Paragon Award, Sandy Nitta began her water polo career first by participating in competitive swimming and developing her swimming skills. A member of the 1964 USA Olympic Swim Team competing in the breaststroke, she coached swimming for a few years prior to turning her attention to the development of water polo.
The founder of the City of Commerce (Calif.) Water Polo program which she led to multiple national championships, Nitta served as the USA’s Women’s International Chairperson from 1976 to 1978. From 1980 to the present, she has given water polo clinics all around the world including New Zealand, Australia, England, Norway, Sweden, Spain, Singapore, India, France, Germany, Brazil and Mexico. In 1977, Commerce hosted the first-ever Women’s International Tournament in the United States and Sandy was the Tournament Director.
She was one of the original coaches who began the push for the inclusion of women’s water polo at the Olympic Games, which became a reality in 2000 during the Sydney Games.
She has recorded an extensive head water polo coaching career in women’s water polo. She was the first Head Coach for the United States Junior National Team (1979). For 17 years (1980-1996, 1998), she was head coach of the USA Senior National Team. She was also head coach of the Queensland, Australia State Team (1996) and the Brazilian Senior National Team (1999-2002) where she coached at the first Pan American Games to include women’s water polo and the first-ever wins against the United States by the Brazilian team.
For two years (2000-2002), she was coach of the Tualatin Hills Water Polo Club in Portland, Oregon and then Head Coach of Team Vegas in Las Vegas (1992-2000) and currently Team Vegas/Henderson (2002 to present).
Other positions of leadership include: U.S. Water Polo Masters Advisory Committee (2008-2011), USA Water Polo Hall of Fame Committee (2006-2010), USA Water Polo Board of Directors (2010 to present), U.S. Olympic Development Director of the West Region (2011 to present) and Co-Chairperson of the USA Water Polo Coaches Association.
She is the first and only female water polo coach in the USA Water Polo Hall of Fame and in her honor, the “Sandy Nitta Distinguished Women’s Coach Award” is presented annually by USA Water Polo.