2-Time gold medalist and MV alumni takes a visit home


Maggie Steffens poses with Megan Okazaki, Katrina Flores, Taylor Okazaki, and Isha Satoor after school in Mr. Powers’ room. (Courtesy of Megan Okazaki)

Heather No, Staff Writer

     On September 13th, the incredible, two-time Olympic gold-medalist, Monte Vista Alumni Maggie Steffens was in town.

     Students often find it strange to think that Steffens, who was the youngest member on team USA for water polo in the 2012 Beijing Olympics, now captain of the team in 2016 for Rio, actually graduated and once walked in our very own halls from years 2007 to 2011. And yet, she came to visit her old high school to talk to the students.

     An olympic-record-tieing athlete, Steffens was on campus in the amphitheater during lunch to speak to students, teachers, and staff, and for pictures. Many students were very excited- especially the women’s water polo team here at MV, many of whom look up to Steffens and aspire to be like her.

     “We were all really excited to have the opportunity to celebrate an alumni and to have more recognition, especially since water polo isn’t really a popular sport to come watch on campus. It was pretty cool to realize that she was in the same place as us 5 years ago and was able to accomplish so much,” Lauren Indart, junior and varsity water polo, said.

     The MV student body was incredibly excited as well. Leadership and admin even set September 13th to be a red, white, and blue spirit day to show MV’s support for her in and out of the pool.

     “Leadership was really excited,” Alex Wilson, junior and leadership student, said. “We set up a spirit day and planned a grand ‘welcome back’ opening because it was an honor to know that the world’s best water polo player graduated from here, at Monte Vista.”

     Maggie Steffens grew up in a family of water polo players; her father competed for Puerto Rico in international tournaments, and her older sister Jessica, joined the US women’s water polo team for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and won silver. But her family didn’t know then that Maggie would become a world star for her talents in the pool.

     “I have seen Maggie play since she was 12,” Adam Krikorian, USA women’s head coach, said to TeamUSA.org. “I knew she was special at 12. It was no surprise. I knew from before, watching her, before ever coaching her, that she was incredibly talented, she was coachable and she was tough as nails. That’s why I wanted her from the get-go.”

     Born in San Ramon, Steffens grew up around here, playing for Diablo Water Polo. She also helped our school win league championships from 2007-2009. She started playing for the US women’s national team as a junior, and she went on to commit to Stanford for her amazing skills. Today, she is known as one of the world’s best female water polo player.