If Tammy and Jennifer Stelnicki had been born with a water polo ball in their hands, no one would have been surprised.
The Stelnickis come from a legendary water polo lineage, starting with their Hall of Fame grandfathers, extending to their All-American mother, aunts and uncles, and continuing to their all-state older brother and sister.
The Stelnickis’ grandfathers, the late Philip Stelnicki and Jim “Moose” Mulcrone, are arguably the most famous names in Illinois water polo coaching history.
They were inductees of the inaugural Illinois Water Polo Hall of Fame class in 1986. Both have awards named after them: The Philip J. Stelnicki Award for the state’s top senior boy and the Jim “Moose” Mulcrone Award for the boys coach of the year.
Mulcrone boasts an even more impressive resume. From 1980 to 1998, he claimed 13 state titles as Brother Rice’s water polo skipper. His teams also placed second five times and third on four occasions, and Mulcrone finished his tenure 724-79 at the all-boys Southwest Side Catholic school.