By GERARDO RECINOS
When Frank Reichert started coaching water polo, none of his current crop of players were born. When he took over in 1999 at Alhambra as the varsity coach, there we no records to break, because none had been recorded.
Nearly 20 years, and 307 wins later, he walks away from the program as the architect of what Alhambra girls water polo has become.
In his final game at Alhambra, senior and captain Daria Dragicevic spoke briefly about what he meant to the team and the girls of the past and present. She also made sure to thank Reichert for sticking around through the long hours at the pool, even when the results weren’t as successful.
Reichert started coaching boys water polo at Antioch High School in 1991. At the time their were no other girls water polo teams in the section, and he was working as a volunteer. In 1992 10 girls tried out for the varsity team at Antioch, and Reichert was the head coach.
At Antioch his crowning achievement was winning the first Bay Valley Athletic League title in 1993. During his time at the helm of the Panthers’ program, his teams were 71-35, and produced two All-Americans in Rebecca Beal and Angela Lindsay.
After a year in 1998 as the junior varsity girls coach, Reichert stepped into the role he would occupy until 2016.
It took five seasons before a team of his would get into the North Coast Section playoffs, but when they did, it was the first of 11 straight appearances under Reichert.
The best performance for Reichert’s squad at Alhambra was the 2011 NCS semi-final where the Bulldogs were knocked out by nine-time NCS champions powerhouse San Ramon Valley. The Wolves would knock out the Bulldogs in 2012 as well in the Bulldogs last appearance in Division I, were they faced schools double their size.
His team’s at Alhambra posted a 224-196 overall record which included an 8-11 record in playoff matches.
His 300th win as a coach came in a buzzer-beater win over Heritage on Sept. 29, on the road.