Feb. 20, 2012
LOS ANGELES - Four UCLA men's water polo players have secured ACWPC All-America honors, as announced by the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches on Monday.
Juniors Josh Samuels and Griffin White have earned first-team All-America acclaim. Senior Cullen Hennessy has captured second-team honors and Matt Rapacz third-team accolades. In addition, senior Brett Hays, sophomore Cristiano Mirarchi and freshman Paul Reynolds have been named honorable mention selections.
Samuels, an honorable mention selection in 2010, and White were named All-America selections for the first time in their careers. Samuels, an attacker from Villa Park, Calif., led UCLA with 49 goals in 2011. White, an attacker from Mission Viejo, Calif., finished the year second on the team with 45 goals.
Hennessy served as UCLA's team captain, scored 20 goals and added a team-best 38 assists. The senior attacker from Fairfax, Calif., scored the game-winning goal in UCLA's 5-4 overtime win against Pepperdine in a first-round match of the MPSF Tournament.
Rapacz logged 148 saves in 26 matches (25 starts), posting a 6.86 goals against average as the Bruins' goalkeeper. The junior from Orange, Calif., was named Most Outstanding Player at the 2011 MPSF Tournament, totaling 31 saves in UCLA's three wins in the tournament.
Hays scored 31 goals and tallied 58 earned exclusions as one of UCLA's primary two-meter players. Mirarchi was named an honorable mention selection for the second straight season. He finished his sophomore campaign with 10 goals, 14 assists and nine steals in 22 matches. Reynolds ranked third on the team with 37 goals during his freshman campaign.
UCLA won the MPSF Tournament for the second time in three years, advancing to the NCAA Tournament the first weekend of December. The Bruins dropped a 7-4 decision to USC in the NCAA Championship match at California, finishing the year with a 24-5 overall record.