Dec. 1, 2004
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Three days after receiving an at-large bid to the upcoming NCAA Final Four, UCLA's men's water polo team has placed six members onto All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation teams, the conference announced Wednesday. Six of the seven Bruin starters received all-conference accolades, including senior attacker Brett Ormsby, senior goalkeeper Joseph Axelrad, junior center defender Michael March, senior attacker Albert Garcia, senior center Ted Peck and senior attacker Josh Hewko.
Receiving first-team honors for UCLA were Axelrad (Studio City, CA) and Ormsby (El Cajon, CA) who both are no strangers to receiving such honors. For Ormsby, it is the fourth time he has been named an all-conference selection. He was a second-team pick as a freshman in 2001 and a first-team member in each of the following three years. Axelrad was an honorable mention selection in 2003 before this year's appointment to the first team. Heading into this weekend's NCAA Final Four, Ormsby leads the Bruins with 67 goals and Axelrad has posted an impressive 5.72 goals against average, which currently ranks third on UCLA's all-time single season list. Ormsby's 2.58 goals per game average is second in the conference only to the MPSF Player of the Year, Stanford's Tony Azevedo.
March, who received third-team All-MPSF honors in 2003, was named second-team All-MPSF this season after so far tallying 26 goals (seven in conference play) and 23 steals. As the only junior starter on the squad, March has also contributed a near team high 17 assists.
Named to the third team was Garcia (Long Beach, CA), whose return to the Bruins after a year off in 2003 has been instrumental in their run towards the NCAA title. As the only remaining member from UCLA's 2000 National Championship team, Garcia receives his second all-conference mention after being named an honorable mention selection in 2001. This season, Garcia's 22 goals ranks fourth on the squad and his 23 steals is tops on the team.
Peck (Irvine, CA) and Hewko (San Clemente, CA) were bestowed honorable mention conference honors. For Peck, the selection marks the third consecutive year he has been named to the honorable mention All-MPSF team and for Hewko the selection is a first.
2004 MPSF Honors Player of the Year: Tony Azevedo, Stanford Newcomer of the Year: Brett McCleave, Long Beach State Coach of the Year: John Vargas, Stanford
First Team All-MPSF Tony Azevedo, Stanford, Sr. Brett Ormsby, UCLA, Sr. Rick Merlo, UC Irvine, Sr. Joe Axelrad, UCLA, Sr. Chad Taylor, Stanford, Jr. Juraj Zatovic, USC, Jr. Peter Varellas, Stanford, Jr. John Mann, Cal, So. James Shin, USC, Sr.
Second Team All-MPSF Dreason Barry, UC Irvine, Jr. Thomas Hopkins, Stanford, Jr. Brett McCleave, Long Beach State, Jr. Dan Noon, UC Irvine, Sr. Brian Alexander, UC Santa Barbara, Sr. Thomas Hale, USC, So. Michael March, UCLA, Jr.
>i>Third Team All-MPSF Nick Andrejich, USC, Sr. Josh Acosta, Pepperdine, Sr. Andrijia Vasiljevic, Cal, So. Greg Crum, Stanford, Sr. Albert Garcia, UCLA, Sr. Grant Miller, Pepperdine, Fr. Jon Bonafede, UC Santa Barbara, Jr.
Honorable Mention All-MPSF Brian Kinsel, Cal, So. Ted Peck, UCLA, Sr. Josh Hewko, UCLA, Sr. Cameron Kaiser, USC, Sr. Brad Scoles, Long Beach State, Jr. Robbie Miller, Pepperdine, So. Andrew Schoneberger, UC Santa Barbara, Sr. Dragan Bakic, Pacific, Fr. Nate Bennett, Cal, Jr. Adam Hewko, Pepperdine, Fr. Don Ricci, USC, So. Reid Tomassi, Long Beach State, So.