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Player Spotlight

All-Illpolo Team

Nikki Nelson helped Naperville Central qualify for state for the first time in 2005. The junior was named to the All-Illpolo second team and the All-State second team at the end of the season. We asked Nikki the following questions in an exclusive Illpolo.com interview:

College choices, major, current GPA?

College... I just got my drivers license, so I will just start with that. I do plan on going to college majoring in nursing or athletic training.


Experience, Club Team, Zone Teams, Off-season work?


I have been playing polo since the fifth grade with my community pool Maplebrook II. (Go Dolphins) I quickly added the West Suburban Water Polo club team, where I met many of the girls that I play with and against, to my activities because I enjoyed it so much. I am still with this team. Off season, I swim for my high school team to stay in shape and I work out regularly. I am now the asst. coach for the Maplebrook II team and summer nanny to my four year old sister Jodie.

Awards and achievements?


Last year as a freshman I received my Varsity letter from NCHS for polo and with that I also received an academic award. I was also nominated for the J. Kyle Braid Leadership award. This award is given to a sophomore with good grades and leadership qualities that make a difference. I didn't win this award but I was one of the top seven. This was quite an accomplishment, I thought.


Personal interests? Music? TV shows?


My favorite thing to do if I am not in a pool (I love the smell of chlorine in the morning) is watch movies with my friends. The scarier the movie the better it is. I also enjoy rap music and MTV.

Goals for the future with polo? School? Life?


I am hoping to receive a scholarship to play polo, but if this doesn't happen I will go to a school that at least has an intramural team or a club that is partially sponsored by the school. I would like to coach a high school team someday after graduating from college. Its really hard to tell you what I expect out of life just being 16, but I am going to prom and hoping to have a great time.


Motivation, inspiration?


My motivation is my family. They always tell me to do my best and never let up. I try to deliver the best game every time I'm in the water. Sometimes that doesn't happen but I know I did my best for that day.

First Season, Soph Year role?


My position freshman year and sophomore year was driver. It helps that I am a pretty fast swimmer thanks to swim team.




60 goals, 41 assists, 54 steals


Other Comments?


I am the oldest of four girls and I'm trying to talk my younger sister into playing for Central next year. I truly enjoy the game and the friendships between the team members. None of us would be where we are without the others.








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