Dec. 18, 2008
WOODLAND, Calif. - Six UCLA men's water polo players have earned MPSF All-Academic Team recognition, as announced Thursday by the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF). Senior Krsto Sbutega gained MPSF All-Academic Team honors for the third consecutive season.
Junior Tyler Jemmett and sophomore Jacob Murphy earned MPSF All-Academic Team recognition for the second straight season. Sophomore Ben Hohl and freshmen Cullen Hennessy and Nick Zakula earned their first selection to the conference's all-academic team.
Sbutega closes his career as one of the program's most decorated student-athletes, both in the pool and classroom. A finalist for the 2008 Peter J. Cutino Award, Sbutega is a three-time All-MPSF Team honoree (first team 2006, 2008; second team 2007) and three-time ACWPC All-Academic selection (2005-07).
Sbutega concluded his four-year career with 143 goals, the fifth-highest career total in program history. The resident of Kotor, Montenegro has twice been honored as an honorable mention ACWPC All-America selection (2006-07) and intends to graduate with a degree in mechanical engineering in June 2009.
Jemmett finished the 2008 season having played all 24 matches, totaling nine goals, nine steals, six blocks and five earned exclusions. The San Diego, Calif., resident tied his career high against Bucknell in the NorCal Tournament on Oct. 11 with a three-goal effort. Jemmett, who earned ACWPC Academic All-America honors in 2007, intends to major in sociology.
Murphy played in all 24 matches in 2008, making 23 starts and finishing fourth on the team with 21 goals. Murphy scored at least one goal in 14 matches and finished his sophomore season with five multiple-goal efforts. Murphy intends to major in history.
Hohl started all 24 matches as a sophomore in 2008, scoring 33 goals, the third-highest total on the team. The Atherton, Calif., resident netted 16 steals, 10 assists and six blocks. Hohl, who intends to major in business economics, recorded eight multiple-goal games this fall and scored in 18 of the team's 24 matches.
Hennessy excelled in his first season in the water, scoring 14 goals on 34 attempts. The redshirt freshman from Fairfax, Calif., played in all 24 matches and made two starts. Hennessy, who intends to major in sociology, finished the 2008 season with 10 earned exclusions, six blocks and five assists.
Zakula played in 14 matches as a redshirt freshman, scoring one goal on seven attempts. The 6-foot-6 defender from San Mateo, Calif., scored his first collegiate goal against Brown in a non-conference match on Oct. 19. Zakula intends to major in communication studies.
Student-athletes must meet four requirements to earn nomination to the MPSF All-Academic Team. The player must maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average and be at least a sophomore academically. Additionally, the student-athlete must have completed one full year at the university prior to the season for which the award is being received. The student-athlete must have competed in at least 50 percent of the team's games that season.