May 4, 2009
SAN FRANCISCO - UCLA women's water polo senior Tanya Gandy has been selected as one of three finalists for the 2009 Peter J. Cutino Award, an accolade presented annually to the outstanding female and male collegiate water polo players in the United States.
Gandy is joined on this year's ballot by USC's Kami Craig and Michelle Stein. Last week, Gandy secured first-team All-MPSF team honors for the first time in her career.
A senior from San Diego, Gandy currently leads the Bruins with 70 goals. She scored six goals in UCLA's final two MPSF games (April 25-26) to move into a four-way second-place tie in the school's record book for most goals in a single season (Kelly Rulon scored 70 goals each season from 2005 through 2007).
Gandy has scored at least one goal in 23 of the Bruins' 28 matches this spring. She ranks fourth among all MPSF players with 2.56 goals per match (70 goals, 28 matches).
Gandy earned All-MPSF Player of the Week honors on March 16 after having scored 13 goals in three games over the previous weekend for UCLA. After registering three goals against UC Irvine, Gandy scored five goals in consecutive contests against Santa Clara (March 13) and San Jose State (March 14).
The UCLA women's water polo program boasts four Peter J. Cutino Award winners. Coralie Simmons won the award in its first year of existence (2001). Natalie Golda became the Bruins' second Cutino Award recipient in 2005, and Kelly Rulon earned the distinction in 2007. One year ago, Courtney Mathewson became UCLA's fourth Cutino Award winner on the women's side.
This year's winner will be announced at the 10th annual Peter J. Cutino Awards Night Dinner on Saturday, June 6, at The Olympic Club's City Clubhouse located at 524 Post Street in San Francisco. UCLA senior Krsto Sbutega of the men's water polo team will also be in attendance as one of the three male finalists.
UCLA (22-6) opens competition at the 2009 NCAA Tournament against sixth-seeded Michigan on Friday, May 8. Game time at the University of Maryland is slated for 12:15 p.m. (PST).