Aug. 23, 2000
BERKELEY, CA - Seven water polo players, and a former coach, with associations to the University of California will be competing for the United States at the Sydney Olympics.
On the men's side, former Golden Bear standouts Gavin Arroyo, Chris Humbert, Sean Nolan and Chris Oeding will be representing the USA.
Arroyo, who played at Cal from 1990-93, will be competing in his second Olympics and was a member of two NCAA champion Bear teams. Humbert, considered by many to be one of the best water polo players in the world, played at Cal from 1988-91, won three NCAA titles and was a two-time NCAA Player of the Year selection. This will be Humbert's third Olympic Games.
Nolan will be competing in his first Olympics. He was an outstanding goalie for the Bears from 1991-94, winning two NCAA titles and was a three-time All-American. Oeding, the team captain for the 2000 USA Olympic team, will be participating in his second Olympics. At Cal, Oeding played from 1989-92, winning three NCAA titles and earned the 1992 NCAA Co-Player of the Year honors with teammate Dirk Zeien.
The United States Women's Water Polo Team will be competing in its first-ever Olympics with the help of current Cal students Heather Petri and Ericka Lorenz, former Bear star Courtney Johnson and former Cal coach Maureen O'Toole.
Petri and Lorenz will be competing for the Bears this spring after the Olympic Games. Petri will be a senior this upcoming season and has been a member of Cal teams that have placed second at the National Championship in 1997 and '98. She also helped lead the Bears club team to the 1998 Summer Senior Nationals title. Lorenz was slated to compete for Cal last spring as a true freshman, but was selected instead to the USA National Team where she is the youngest member of the team (born Feb. 18, 1981).
Johnson was the Bears first women's water polo star when the sport gained varsity status in 1996. In '96, she was the MPSF Northern Division Player of the Year, Western Regional Tournament MVP, Collegiate National Tournament MVP and a first team All-American. O'Toole, the veteran of the U.S. National Team at 39 and one of the top players in the world, coached Cal from 1996-98, helping lead the Bears to two second-place national finishes and was twice named MPSF Northern Division Coach of the Year.