Trio of Falcons Recognized by WWPA

    Freshman Petar Jackovich

    Freshman Petar Jackovich

    Nov. 15, 2011

    LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Three Air Force water polo players were honored by the Western Water Polo Association today, as the league announced its annual awards, voted on by the league's coaches. Sophomore Josh Stedman was named a first-team All-WWPA selection, junior Cruz Smithson earned honorable mention all-conference recognition and rookie Petar Jackovich was named to the WWPA All-Freshman Team.

    Stedman, an all-freshman selection last season, is the youngest member of this season's All-WWPA first team and the second Falcon to be named a first-team all-conference honoree in the past three seasons. The attack from Brea, Calif., currently ranks second on the team in goals (38) and points (48), while leading the Falcons with 26 steals on the season.

    Smithson also earns the first conference accolades of his career after being named the WWPA Newcomer of the Year in 2009. The utility player from Capistrano Beach, Calif., currently has a team-best 43 goals and 58 points on the season and is third in both assists (15) and steals (16). Meanwhile, Jackovich, a native of New Lenox, Ill., was honored as an all-freshman team member after finishing the regular season with eight goals, two assists and eight steals.

    In addition to releasing its all-conference teams, the WWPA also announced the winners of this year's major awards. Loyola Marymount senior Edgaras Asajavicius and freshman Joe Ferretti were named the league's Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year, respectively, while UC San Diego's Denny Harper was named the Coach of the Year.

    Air Force will head to the 2011 Western Water Polo Association Championship, hosted by UC San Diego, this week, Nov. 17-20. The fifth-seeded Falcons will face 12th-seed Occidental in the opening game of the tournament, with the winner advancing to play fourth-seed UC Davis on Friday.



    2011 Western Water Polo Association Men's Water Polo Honors
    Player of the Year:
    Edgaras Asajavicius (Sr.) - Utility - Loyola Marymount
    Newcomer of the Year: Joe Ferretti (Fr.) - Utility - Loyola Marymount
    Coach of the Year: Denny Harper - UC San Diego

    First-Team All-WWPA
    Edgaras Asajavicius (Sr., Utility) - Loyola Marymount
    John Butler (Jr., Driver) - UC San Diego
    James Case (Sr., Driver) - Santa Clara
    Jon Colton (Jr., Utility) - Loyola Marymount
    David Morton (Sr., Goalie) - UC San Diego
    Aaron Salit (Sr., Center) - UC Davis
    Josh Stedman (So., Attack) - Air Force

    Second-Team All-WWPA
    Brian Chong (Sr., Driver) - Claremont-Mudd-Scripps
    Brian Donohoe (Jr., 2M Defense) - UC San Diego
    Joe Ferretti (Fr., Utility) - Loyola Marymount
    Colin Hicks (Jr., Attack) - UC Davis
    Mark Hudnall (Jr., Attack) - Pomona-Pitzer
    Graham Saber (Sr., Driver) - UC San Diego
    Michael Wishart (Sr., Goalie) - Santa Clara

    Honorable Mention All-WWPA
    Brett Carter (So., 2M) - Chapman
    Erick Gonzalez (So., Attack) - Whittier
    Tai McDermott (Sr., Utility) - Occidental
    Daley Meistrell (Sr., Driver) - Santa Clara
    Jeff Parsons (Sr., Driver) - Redlands
    Cruz Smithson (Jr., Utility) - Air Force
    Blake vanHartesvelt (Sr., Center) - Redlands
    Kyle Testman (Jr., Goalie) - Loyola Marymount

    WWPA All-Freshman Team
    Mark David - Santa Clara
    Joe Ferretti - Loyola Marymount
    Matt Machalko - UC San Diego
    Dan Newell - La Verne
    Petar Jackovich - Air Force
    Chris Richardson - UC Davis
    Stephen Vint - Pomona-Pitzer

    Inside Men's Water Polo