By Javier Cabrera | Interim News Editor
Later this year the Riverside Sport Hall of Fame is scheduled to induct seven new members at its 11th annual Riverside Sport Hall of Fame Parade of Champions and Induction Celebration at the Riverside Municipal Auditorium on May 19.
One notable member being inducted is David Almquist, Riverside City College women’s water polo coach and RCC women’s swim assistant coach.
Almquist has been coaching for 39 years. Through that period, he has coached at Riverside Poly High School for 22 years, RCC for 17 years, an Olympic coach for four years (winning a silver medal at the 1988 Summer Olympics), an national youth coach for the United States 16 and under for two years and an National junior men’s 20 and under for four years.
During his time at Poly, Almquist led his teams to four Southern section titles. At his time at RCC, Almquist led the women’s water polo team to four state titles, eight Orange Empire Conference titles and a 184-12 record in six seasons.
Albert Melendez / Special to Viewpoints
In his biography by the Riverside Sport Hall of Fame states, “During the years of their championship runs, a big part of the program success has been the coaching philosophy of coach Almquist which emphasizes team togetherness and unselfish play.”
Almquist said he is very thrilled to be inducted into the Riverside Sport Hall of Fame because he has coached in Riverside his whole life and he is retiring here.
“It means a lot to me, it means to my family; they will all be here,” he said. “It is nice to share your successes with people, your family and the community you grew up in and loved.”
Almquist is scheduled to retire at the end of the semester and he said the thing he will remember from his coaching career are the people.
“( . . .) those championships bring back people. People I coached; people in the community that share those championships with me; people that I worked alongside with as principles, athletic directors, coaches, but mainly the players and their families of this community,” he said. “When you are all done and it is all over and set and done, all you have is people; all those numbers on the walls and all those championships do not mean anything.”
Almquist said he content with his career.
“I have thought about that a lot, the biggest emotion I have is contentment; I have given a big effort,” he said tried hold back tears. “It is really hard to say, but I am really done coaching. The energy it takes is really more than I have to give right now.