July 7, 2006
BERKELEY, CALIF. - California water polo players John Mann, Michael Sharf and Spencer Warden have all been representing the United States in international water polo competition this summer as members of the USA Senior National Team or Junior National Team.
Mann, a 6-5, 225-pounder who will be a senior this fall for the Golden Bears, trained with the national team from June 23-July 2 in Sydney Australia and helped Team USA to a pair of victories over Australian National Team. A first-team All-American in 2005, Mann led the No. 3-ranked Golden Bears (21-7) in scoring with 56 goals and was the Oct. 4, 2005 MPSF Player of the Week after leading Cal to three victories and scoring four goals in the Bears' 9-5 victory over Stanford. Mann now has 138 career goals after recording 60 goals last season as a sophomore and 22 goals as a freshman. He joined former Cal standout Spencer Dornin (1998-01) on the USA squad in Australia.
Also traveling the globe for Team USA this summer will be Sharf, a 6-3, 205-pounder attacker who was selected as a third-team All-American in 2005, tallying 31 goals in 27 matches. He is schedule to compete, along with former Bear goalie Nate Bennett (2002-05) and Dornin, when Team USA competes in the FINA World League Preliminaries July 14-16 in Victoria, Canada. Mann, Sharf, Dornin and Bennett will then be candidates to compete for the United States at the World League Semifinals July 19-23 in Los Alamitos, Calif., and the World League Super Final August 2-6 in Athens, Greece.
Warden, a 6-3, 185-pound attacker who will be a redshirt freshman this fall at Cal, is a member of the USA Junior National Team and just returned from the Memorial Tournament, June 29-July 2 in Italy, scoring a goal against Slovakia. He will next compete in the High Tatras Cup, July 7-9 in Slovakia.
"We are very proud of our players as they represent the United States in these prestigious international competitions," said Bear coach Kirk Everist, who was a member of the USA Olympic Team in 1992 and 1996. "These are fantastic experiences for them."