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Lynn receives welcome

Newport Harbor High, Newport Beach Aquatics coach, an assistant for U.S Olympic team, says he's eager to begin anew.

August 27, 2012|By Matt Szabo
  • Newport Harbor High boys' water polo coach Robert Lynn shares a hug with Wendy Maurer during a Summer Soiree hosted by the Newport Aquatic Center on Saturday, August 25. Lynn was an assistant coach for the U.S. men's national team at the 2012 London Olympics.
Newport Harbor High boys' water polo coach Robert… (KEVIN CHANG, Daily…)

NEWPORT BEACH — Robert Lynn said it felt good to be back home in Southern California after the London Olympics.

Lynn was an assistant coach on the U.S. Olympic men's water polo team that finished eighth in London. He said he got funny text messages from friends and family watching on television, telling him not to be so angry during the contests.

But Lynn felt less comfortable about having a microphone in his hand, he joked at the Newport Beach Aquatics Summer Soiree on Saturday night at the Newport Aquatic Center.

"I'll tell you, I was the only kid to run away from school every time I had to do an oral report," he told a laughing crowd of a couple hundred people.

The soiree was a "Welcome home" party for Lynn, who is the Newport Beach Aquatics club head coach and technical director, as well as the head boys' water polo and swim coach at Newport Harbor High.

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Lynn said he had a great time in London. He sent some of his experiences back home, using Skype with his young daughter while walking through the Olympic Village.

"It was fantastic," he said. "London did a great job of preparing the Olympics, I thought. All the venues were really close together and everyone spoke English, so it was easier to get along. It was very friendly. As we're training in water polo, in our sport, we go to many countries that aren't really friendly with the United States. We're always very secluded ... [but] this was a treat.

"The Olympic Village was incredible. It's always fascinating when you have 30,000 of the best athletes living together ... When you're in the middle of it, it's really unbelievable. It's fascinating to see [Michael] Phelps walk through and to see Usain Bolt, and then here comes the Dream Team."

The eighth-place finish was not the dream finish for the United States, which won silver in Beijing. Lynn, a former All-American at USC and himself a longtime national team member who played in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, could not be too disappointed. He said he told the players as much.

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