skip to main content
Torres Attacks Her Goals
Posted On:
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Photo by Len Wood/SM Times
Photo by Len Wood/SM Times

Double-teamed, and with almost no room to shoot, Pioneer Valley senior Nicole Torres still fired the ball into the net for a goal from about 10 meters away in a recent water polo game.

Pioneer Valley’s senior class president is pretty determined away from the pool, too.

She said she has a 4.0 grade point average, which puts her about 40th in a graduating class of around 600. Torres said she has been class president since her sophomore year.

The teen has been accepted by several universities and is a member of a local civic organization, Ashtra.

“Ashtra is the high school version of Altrusa,” said Torres. “The organization promotes literacy, and we’re trying to buy Braille books with money we’ve gotten through fund-raising. We hope to distribute them to the Santa Maria Public Library.”

Torres holds the Pioneer Valley girls water polo record for goals scored in a game, six. She has 13 goals this year.

“The school season record is 15 that Sydney Howe set two years ago,” said Panthers girls water polo coach Kevin Jauregui.

Torres has 13 steals this season. That’s second on the team to a fellow team captain, two-meter defender Victoria Ramirez. Ramirez has 20 steals.

No, Torres said with a chuckle, she doesn’t watch much TV. She has played golf and water polo for Pioneer Valley since her sophomore year.

Cal Poly, San Diego State, Missouri, Arizona State and The King’s College in New York are among the schools Torres said she has been accepted to. She has applied to around 20 schools.

“So far, no rejection letters,” Torres said.

Her school of choice is Georgetown. “It’s a long shot,” she conceded. She added, “But I’m hoping. I should hear from them in a couple of months.

“If not Georgetown, I would love to go to UCLA or Boston University. I just applied to those schools. I think I should hear from them around March-ish.”

The teen said she plans to study Political Science in college. “After that, maybe I’ll go on to Pre-Law,” Torres said.

Torres hopes her athletic career doesn’t end when her high school days are through.

“I definitely want to continue playing water polo,” she said. “Maybe not at the Division I level, but I’d like to play water polo after high school.”

Jauregui said Torres has established some solid high school water polo credentials.

The Panthers’ coach said, “She plays hole set on offense, and not only is she a good offensive player, but she’s one of the best defenders who plays the hole set position that I’ve had in five years of coaching.

“It’s a rare thing when a hole-set player can play defense. She’s been able to steal the ball off a counter play and then score. That’s a rare thing.”

Jauregui relishes Torres’ leadership abilities.

“I’ve been able to delegate a lot to her, a lot more responsibilities than I’ve been able to delegate in the past,” he said.

“As a coach, that’s made it nice to be able to just coach instead of trying to manage everything.”

Jauregui coaches the Pioneer Valley boys and girls varsity water polo teams. The programs have struggled to get decent participation numbers at times but, under Jauregui’s leadership, both are gradually improving.

Players such as Torres have made his job easier.

After being so wrapped up in high school academics, sports and student government, Torres said it is sinking in that she’s in her last semester at Pioneer Valley.

That mindset is “not set in stone yet,” she said.

However, “I’m already looking forward to the new experiences (after high school), meeting new people.”

Kenny Cress / Sportswriter / SM Times 1/22/12

Read more:

View all Spotlights
Barrueta Named as Horatio Alger Scholarship Winner Cisneros Heading to Stanford Letona Robles Yale-Bound McKee Receives SELPA-Bration Award Magni Accepts South Dakota Offer McKee Honored
Stieger Named Technology TOSA of the Year Drum Major Geronimo Shines Eckardt is Teacher of the Year Carandang Featured as Senior Spotlight Pinedo-Tovar Exemplifies Moral Character SM Times Highlights Morin Ellsworth Selected as HOBY Ambassador Guerra Receives Teacher of Excellence Award Equihua Receives Lots of Great News Castro Honored with Meritorious Service Award Salgado Represents PVHS in Boston Vargas Highlighted by Sun Ilac Receives Honor Smith Named Varsity Baseball Coach Rivas to Sign for Waldorf College Barrera Holds State Title Perez Signs with ASCAP Placencia First to be Honored at State Science Fair Vasquez to Serve as Regional Sentinel Howard to be Honored as Outstanding Career Tech Educator Jones Selected to LCCN First Team Congratulations Ms. Walters Freshman Neal Awarded Letterman's Jacket Gomez to Become a Red Raider Mr. McKee Recognized for His Work with Individuals with Disabilities Soccer Standout Brafman to Represent Brazil in Israeli Games Cervantes a State Champion DJ Claborn Elected in South Coast Region Harvard Bound PV Science Teacher Competes in Russia Foreign Exchange Highlights Belgium Carandang Receives DAR Award Ramirez Receives NMSC Commendation Bautista to Wrestle in Georgia English Teacher Spaht Recognized by CABE PVHS Teachers Honored Cabanas Making a Difference Scanelli Gets Real Life Experience as Volunteer Educators Honored at Annual Celebration Felix-Villarreal to Attend Leaders Conference Barrett No Longer "Wrestling" with College Choice - Will Attend King University Apple Receives Prestigious Award PV Has Second Two-Time All American Barrett Headed for National Tournament Class of 2014 Grad Featured in News-Press Mansera One of Leading Backs in Area Skyler Debuts First Single During Lunchtime Rally Ysip Takes the Stage Chelsea Dionisio Signs to Attend Jamestown University Police Explorers Garner Third Place In Competition Lady Wrestlers Sign Letters to Attend University of the Cumberlands Tell Selected as SM Times All-Area MVP Zaragoza Hits Her Way to Win Athlete of the Week Tompkins Finishes Season with NSBCART Award Ruiz Wrestles to Win Athlete of the Week Award Dulay Named Female Athlete of the Week Chasing the Golden Trifecta Isabelle Rodriguez is Female Athlete of the Week PV Takes Two at Round Table Girls Wrestler Barret Selected as NSBCART Female Athlete of the Week Boys of the Gridiron: Chris Carter Zambrano Receives Distinguished New Educator Award English Teacher, Mr. Ostini, Receives Grant Eduardo Cortes wins Poetry Contest Round Table 2012-2013 - Week 1 Tuba Player to Join Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corp This Summer Three Sport Athlete Headed for UCLA Sophomore Wins Local Speech Contest Minerva Club Names Scholarship Winners College Acceptances for Class of 2012 Athletic Roundtable 5-7-12 Athletic Roundtable 4-30-12 Gates Millenium 2012 Scholars Named Athletic Roundtable 4-23-12 PVHS Science Teacher Wins Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educators Athletic Roundtable 4-16-12 Recognizes Wrestling All-Americans Athletic Roundtable 4-2-12 Velasco Named as New Girls Soccer Coach Athletic Roundtable 3-26-12 Robles Named to Division 5 All-CIF Team New Coaches Take the Fields Athletic Roundtable 3-19-12 Science in Action Project Funded Language Teacher to Study in Spain International Languages Department Member wins Outstanding Teacher Award International Languages Teacher to Present at National Conference Athletic Roundtable 3-12-12 PV Tennis Player to Attend CSU Bakersfield PVHS Science Teacher Finalist for Teacher of the Year Athletic Roundtable 3-5-12 Dance Off! Athletic Roundtable 2-27-12 Boys Soccer Makes History with Quarterfinal Appearance Felix Notches Lone Goal in PV Win Marin Strikes Gold for the Panthers Poetry Out Loud Contest has PVHS Winner PVHS Student a Teen Star Finalist Panthers Take Bite out of Eagles Wild Night of Wrestling Torres Attacks Her Goals