By James Williams / Sports Editor
By James Williams / Sports Editor
The aquatics career for Andrea Antonissen at Riverside City College comes to a close after competing in two different sports for the Tigers.
In the final semester of her sports eligibility at RCC, Antonissen finished her career reaching the highest accomplishment she could reach by going undefeated at the state meet in the maximum limit of three events she competed in.
Antonissen was named the as the 2012 women’s Co-Swimmer of the Year at the end of the state meet.
“These are the top girls in the state. Of course I felt pressure from them. They are all great athletes, but I just know my better is better than their better,” Antonissen said. “I know that when I am in that pool, I am going to do my best to win.”
She won three individual events, the first time in the history of RCC, and has been voted as the swimmer of the meet at the 2012 California Community College Athletic Association swimming and diving championships.
“Andrea won all three of her individual championships, and has been named player of the year in water polo and swimmer of the meet for the state of California in swimming; that is big time. I am very proud of her,” said Dave Almquist, Antonissen’s coach at RCC for both swimming and water polo.
In her first semester at RCC, she joined the water polo team, and faced the highs and lows as she adjusted to a new program after playing four years at King High School.
“I never expected to be as good as I was talked up to be, I just knew I was going to work for it, especially water polo,” Antonissen said.
She also spoke about her first performance as a member of RCC’s water polo team.
“My first game was at American River College. I was so pumped to play for the RCC team. Obviously I did not do that great. It was not my best. I think I got scored on seven to nine times,” Antonissen said.
“If you look back at my records, I do not really get scored on more than four or five times, so being scoring on that high was kind of a shocker, but there is always time for improvement.”
Despite the low points in her career, she has always counted on her family and coaches for support.
“I have a lot of family and people who mean so much to me. My dad supports me the most, he is like my number one fan. So are my sister and little brother,” Antonissen said.
“My little brother will go to every event and he will sit at my practices when he has to and he will not complain. He will just sit there and watch me.”
Antonissen was able to adjust to the next level right after college after having her sister, Ashley Antonissen, who was a sophomore at the time, as one of her teammates.
“(Ashley) always pushes me harder. I am never good enough, which makes me want to work harder,” Antonissen said.
As the starting goalie for the Tigers, Antonissen won her first in what would be two back to back state women’s water polo championships.
“That was the most exciting year of my life,” Antonissen said.
After the championship season ended, Antonissen stayed in the pool for the following semester in the spring of 2011, as a member of the Tigers’ swimming and diving team.
“I wanted to be a diver and just stay in shape for water polo, but it just so happen I became a swimmer, and I was good at it,” Antonissen said.
Antonissen played water polo all four years of high school, but only competed as a member of her high school’s swim and dive team during her freshman and sophomore years.
“I quit swimming my junior and senior year of high school,” she said. “I (got back) into the pool and I decided one swim meet, that I was going to try my best, and after I found out I had the lowest splits of all our swimmers, I officially became a swimmer (for the Tigers.)”