2001 Water Polo Season Review
Dec. 17, 2001
The Falcons finished the 2001 season 12-13 and took fourth at the Western Water Polo Association Championships in Los Angeles, Calif. C2C (Jr.) Chris Smith, and C3C's (So.) Scott Butler and Brandon Shroyer were all named to the Western Water Polo Association's All-Conference teams. Smith was named first team all-conference. Butler was named second team all-conference and Shroyer received honorable mention.
Smith led the Air Force offense this season with 43 goals and 37 assists, also collecting 36 steals. Butler led the team in scoring with 47 goals, managing 14 assists and 42 steals. In goal, Shroyer had 158 saves and 30 steals.
The Falcons were able to maintain a strong campaign this season, despite the loss of eight of their top-nine players to either graduation or injury. Air Force began the 2001 season with a split at the UC San Diego Triton Tournament. Air Force defeated BYU-Hawaii, 14-4, and La Verne, 14-6 in their first day of competition. Air Force lost both games the following afternoon, suffering a bitter 14-2 loss to tournament hosts UCSD and falling 13-6 to Loyola Marymount.
The Falcons were at the UC-Santa Cruz Slugfest Tournament the next weekend. Air Force finished its first day with a 15-3 win over Pomona-Pitzer and a 12-7 win over tournament hosts UCSC. Air Force split in its final day falling to Redlands (11-10) and defeating Santa Clara (7-4). Against Navy, the Falcons fell 8-5 but managed a win later that afternoon against George Washington University and defeated the Colonials, 10-5.
Air Force split at the Northern California Water Polo Tournament in Palo Alto, hosted by Stanford. The Falcons fell 13-5 to second-ranked UCLA and were edged, 6-5, by Univ. of the Pacific in their first day of competition. Air Force rebounded the following day, defeating both Santa Clara (10-8) and UC-Davis (4-3). The Falcons went 1-3 at the Air Force Water Polo Tournament last weekend. Air Force lost in overtime to California Baptist (10-8) in its first game of the tournament, and fell 8-5 to Navy Saturday evening. The Falcons defeated UC Davis (7-5) the following day, but lost their final match of the weekend to UC San Diego (8-3). Air Force split Nov. 3-4 at Loyola Marymount and Claremont with losses against LMU (11-6) and UC-Santa Barbara (10-6) during the first day of competition. Air Force rebounded the following day, defeating Claremont (12-4) and Chapman Univ. (7-2).
At the WWPA Championships, the Falcons defeated UC Davis in overtime, 8-6 in their first day of competition. Air Force fell 5-4 to Redlands Univ. the following day to finish fourth.
For more information and reflections on the season, please visit the "From the Coach" section located in the Falcon's Nest area of the water polo page.