Nov. 14, 2012
Senior utility Matt Vowell earned a spot on the first team while sophomore utility Chris Richardson made the second team to highlight UC Davis on the All-Western Water Polo Association teams as announced by the league office on Wednesday. Additionally, true freshman Philip Bates was selected to the WWPA All-Freshman team for his contributions as a goalkeeper.
The Aggies compete as the fourth seed in the conference championship tournament this Friday through Sunday.
Vowell, the team's workhorse with more than 21 minutes played per game, leads UC Davis with 40 assists while contributing 31 goals and 58 drawn exclusions. He has posted four hat tricks this season, including four against Fresno Pacific and three against 17th-ranked Bucknell at the Rodeo tournament at Santa Clara in late October. The lefty from nearby Jesuit High finished the regular season with a five-assist performance against Santa Clara last weekend. He looks to break Grant Muenter's school record of 44 assists during this weekend's WWPA tournament.
Richardson, a Palos Verdes Estates native and a former All-Freshman honoree, has paced the Aggies in scoring throughout the season. On Sunday against Santa Clara, he tallied seven goals - the highest total by a UC Davis player in 15 years - to bring his team-high season total to 64. Richardson also leads the Aggies with 27 6-on-5 goals and 16 five-meter goals. The only other player on the team (besides Vowell) to average more than 20 minutes per game, he has scored 12 hat tricks this season. Richardson also enjoyed a streak of 14 straight games with at least one goal from September 15 to October 7.
After a strong relief appearance at Air Force on October 13, Bates took over as the team's starting goalkeeper the following week. In nine games overall, the Santa Barbara native and Dos Pueblos High alumnus has tallied 78 saves and 15 steals in just 272 minutes in the cage. Bates has hit double-figure saves on four occasions, including 13 against Loyola Marymount and a season-best 14 against No. 3 Stanford.
UC San Diego's Josh Stiling was named WWPA Player of the Year while LMU attacker Milutin Mitrovic earned Newcomer of the Year honors.
The WWPA tournament begins Friday at Whittier College.