Sunday, September 26, 2010


Caleb Hamilton

Jon Jon Colton

Travis Noll

Dustin Hayashi

James Hartshorne

Kyle Kim-E

Cody Skelly

Parker Simmons

Jason Lantgen

Clark Condict

Derek Weibe Bailey

Jason Peck

Adam Rollins

2007 CIF Semi- Finals vs Los AL

2009 Sea View League Stirs Up


October 04, 2006|Eric Sondheimer

Caleb Hamilton, a water polo standout at Irvine Northwood, signed his first autograph last year when some kids sought his signature during a junior tournament in Argentina.

"It was definitely a little weird but a cool feeling," he said.

Those kids knew what they were doing because Hamilton, 17, is one of America's best prospects.

He was the second-leading scorer and the youngest player on the U.S. team that won gold at the Junior Pan American Water Polo Championships in August in Montreal.

His coach at Northwood, Steve Carrera, doesn't hesitate to compare him to two of the greatest players in Southland history, the late Jim Toring and current U.S. national team member Tony Azevedo.

"Those are the people I always looked up to," Hamilton said. "And to be mentioned with them is awesome."

He is considered the No. 1 college prospect in the nation and a potential scoring machine for any program that lands him. At the high school level, he isn't just being double-teamed. Try triple-teamed.

He finds a way to provide instant offense. Last season, he scored 108 goals. He had eight goals in a game this season against Laguna Hills.

Today, he'll try to lead host Northwood, ranked No. 2 in the Southern Section Division I coaches' poll, against top-ranked Lake Forest El Toro. They met in the South Coast tournament final, with El Toro winning, 11-9. Hamilton scored 21 goals in five games of the tournament.

The opportunity to have played against 20-year-olds during international competition in the summer and train with U.S. national team members gives Hamilton invaluable experience and helps separate him from peers at the high school level.

Just from a physical standpoint, at 6 feet 3 and 200 pounds, he's bigger and stronger than many, but he was pushed around by older Hungarians and Russians during the summer, letting him know what awaits him at the college and international levels.

"I have the size and strength, and I have to try to find a way to get around them," he said.

There are two distinct qualities that define Hamilton: Athleticism and work ethic.

"If he'd be playing any other sport, he'd be a Division I athlete," Carrera said.

Blame it on his mother, Anastasia, for football losing out to water polo. She's a former swimmer who introduced him to the sport as a 7-year-old.

"I find it a lot of fun," he said. "I like the fact you can be down five goals and two minutes later, it can be tied. I love physical sports."

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