April 30, 2010
DAVIS, Calif. - Prospective student-athletes Hannah Curran, Katie Jackson, Paige Oreglia and Erin Schlueter signed National Letters of Intent (NLI) to UC Davis women's water polo during the 2009 and 2010 signing periods, it was announced by head coach Jamey Wright. All four prospects are seniors in high school and are expected to enroll at UC Davis for the 2010-11 fall quarter.
Curran, a Martinez, Calif. native and center for College Park High School, was chosen as Diablo Valley Athletic League Player of the Year as a senior in 2009, helping the Falcons assemble a 22-6 overall record. She had previously earned All-DVAL first-team honors as a junior, a second-team nod as a sophomore and league honorable mention as a freshman. Curran also appeared on the Bay Area News Group's All East Bay/North Bay area first team as a senior. In the winter, she finished 11th in the 100-yard breaststroke and helped the 400 medley relay place fourth at the North Coast Section swimming championship. In the classroom, she ranks 15th in a class of more than 400, having earned USAWP All-Academic in 2008 and 2009.
"Hannah Curran is long and strong, a player who can play a couple of positions for us," said Wright. "Because of her strength, she is a tremendous post-up player. Center is probably her best position. But unlike most centers, she is an outstanding outside shooter. From an offensive standpoint, she'll be able to help us both inside and outside."
Oreglia will become the fourth member of her family attending UC Davis, including her cousin, Kelley, who redshirted with the Aggie water polo team in 2008. Paige transferred to Willow Glen High School for her senior year after earning second-team All-West Catholic Athletic League honors at Presentation High last season. She also played club ball for the Stanford Water Polo Club and as a member of the Pacific Zone ODP squad. In swim season, Oreglia earned NISCA All-America honors in the 200 free relay.
"Paige is an interesting player in that she is probably as tall and strong as Curran, and also has a good outside shot. But a key thing she brings is that she is left-handed," Wright said. "If you look at our roster right now, we have 32 right-handers and Carey Faber. Having another lefty balances the pool offensively -- when you have multiple lefties, no one has a bad angle. Paige is a defender for her high school team and probably will play there for us. She's strong and physical, and will push people out of two meters."
"Between Hannah and Paige, we get some good outside shooting and more physicality," Wright added. "It's not like we don't have a lot of good shooters already, but having them adds to it. And hopefully, we get a little more help defensively, putting some physical pressure on other team's centers."
Schlueter, a Tamalpais High standout and the younger sister of current Aggie Katie Schlueter, earned All-Marin County Athletic League for a third straight season as a senior, while adding All-East Bay/North Bay second-team distinction. In 2008, she set school records of 104 goals and 151 steals to pick up All-North Coast Section honors, following a sophomore season of 65 goals, 120 steals and 53 assists. Schlueter also stars for Marin WPC, competing on the Pacific Zone ODP team for three summers. In the winter, she set Tam school records in the 100 back, 200 individual medley, 50 free plus several relays, earning a team MVP nod in 2009. In the classroom, Schlueter is a two-time NCS Scholar-Athlete and a USAWP All-Academic honoree.
"Erin Schlueter is a very versatile player who had to play every position for her high school team," said Wright. "She will give us a little more speed and quickness. She will join players like Christina Miyabe and Ariel Feeney, who are moving around and creating opportunities. Erin is a good counterattacker and a smart player who comes from excellent high school and club programs.
Jackson, of Costa Mesa, Calif., scored 37 goals with 33 assists and 32 steals to help Southern California powerhouse Newport Harbor High School post a 24-6 record and advance to the Southern Section Division I title game in 2009. For her part, she earned first-team All-Sunset League honors to follow up the second-team nod she collected as a junior. Jackson also helped the Sailor 400 free relay squad to a seventh-place showing at the CIF-SS swim meet in 2009.
"Jackson is similar to Erin Schlueter -- a quick attacker and a really smart player who comes from a tremendous high school program," Wright said. "You can't go wrong getting someone from Newport Harbor. What Mater Dei and De La Salle are to football, Newport Harbor is to water polo. That's really the way it is. Her coach, Bill Barnett, was the men's Olympic coach in 1984 and 1988. His players are tough, they're in shape, they know where to go and what to do. So Katie brings a tremendous amount coming from that program.
"Katie knows where to go on counterattacks, which is a big part of what we do. She's a speedy player who will wear out opponents."
UC Davis finished its 2010 season with a 16-17 record and a No. 17 ranking in the April 28 national coaches' poll.