BRIDGEPORT, Pa. — 10 student-athletes earn recognition on the 2017 Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC) Men’s Varsity Division II All-America Team.
The University of California-San Diego leads the team with three selections, while California Baptist University (two), Concordia University (one), Fresno Pacific University (one), Gannon University (one), Mercyhurst University (one) and Salem International University (one) account for the remainder of the honors.
A total of eight players earn spots on the First Team due to a tie as Division II National Player of the Year Arman Momdzhayn, Connor Turnbow–Lindenstadt and goalie Sam Thompson of UC-San Diego lead the squad. Jonathan Loteroand Tanner Shore of California Baptist, Angel Rojas of Concordia, Kyle Eoff of Fresno Pacific and Zarko Sadikovic of Gannon account for the remainder of the First Team.
Connor Schmitz of Mercyhurst and Djordje Stavrevski of Salem International round out the All-America awards as the duo garner Honorable Mention accolades.
A two-time National Player of the Year selection following laurels in 2016, Momdzyhan’s repeat nod continues a tradition of excellence for the Tritons of UC-San Diego as his selection marks the 13th award following Josh Stiling (2014; 2012-co.), David Morton (2011), Steve Donohoe (2009; 2007), Ty Lackey (2006), Jon Hopkins (2005; 2003, 2002) and Jonathan Samuels (2001; 2000). Brett Luehman (2013; 2012-co), Andy Sekulski (2010) and Andrew Schonoff (2008) of Mercyhurst; Burak Incam (1999), Andre Doria (1998-co.), John Vasek (1997) of Queens College (N.Y.); Vanja Kalabic (2004) of Brigham Young University-Hawaii; Ryan Phillips (1998-co.) of Slippery Rock University; and Ryan Indart (1996) of the University of California-Davis have also earned recognition as the Division II Player of the Year.
Outside of the water, UC-San Diego’s Denny Harper collects his 13th Division II and 16th overall National Coach of the Year award.
The 1996, 1998 and 1999 Division III Coach of the Year at UC-San Diego prior to the program’s rise to the Division II ranks, Harper takes home his eighth consecutive Division II Coach of the Year accolade after taking the 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2011 and 2009 awards and tying with Mercyhurst’s Curtis Robinette in 2012. A Division III Coach of the Year was not selected in either 2010, 2007 or 2002.
Prior to 2010, Harper notched the 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2000 Division II awards with Robinette (2012-co; 2008), Steve Doten (2001) and Tom Elson (1996) of UC-Davis and Pedro Lima (1999, 1998, 1997-co.) and Shelly Rothman (1997-co.) of Queens (N.Y.) accounting the other recipients dating back to the first presentation of the Division II Coach of the Year award in 1996.
The ACWPC All-America teams are selected based on nominations and voting by the head coach of each program by National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division (Division I, II, III).
Since 2005, the mission of the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC) is to promote the development and advancement of collegiate water polo. This shall be accomplished by providing its membership with professional education, services, training and a united voice.
2017 Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches Division II All-America Team
Player of the Year:
Arman Momdzhyan (University of California-San Diego)