California Women's Water Polo Class of 2009 Final BiosThe California women's water polo team graduated two seniors in 2009 - goalkeeper Lauren Burke and two-meter defender Paige Lorenz.
Senior Class of 2009 Photo Gallery
Lauren BurkeNo. 1
Hometown: Huntington Beach, Calif.
High School: Los Alamitos HS
Lauren Burke finished her four-year career at Cal seventh on the all-time saves list with 156 saves in 39 games, averaging 4.0 saves per game. She is second all-time on the goals allowed career record list, only allowing an average of 2.87 goals per game, which is good for second place. (Both records are as of 4-28-09)
Set a new Cal program record for goals allowed average in a single season with just 2.68 goals against per game
Notched 108 saves during her senior season (2008), which was more than double the saves she had during her first three years at Cal
Combined with Stephanie Peckham for a 2009 team high of 21 saves against Indiana on March 21, 2009
In 2008, played in four games, grabbing 18 saves to average 4.50 per game and allowed just 11 goals
2008 season high of five saves came in the 14-7 win over No. 14 Hartwick
Made a career-high eight saves at the 2007 MPSF Tournament
Selected to the 2007 Academic All-MPSF list
Member of the 2005 U.S. Junior National Team
Parents are Kim Olson and Dennis Burke
Why I Chose Cal
"Many reasons: attending the No. 1 public school in the nation, competing on a Division I water polo team, feeling welcome on my recruiting trip, and experiencing a new place."
CalBears.com: You and your teammate Stephanie Schnugg are both majoring in art. What's your favorite aspect about your major and how did you decide on it?
Lauren Burke: The Art department at Cal is chock full of colorful individuals that inspire and or entertain me on a day-to-day basis. I love to paint, thus my time spent in the studio has been very rewarding. I intended on majoring in architecture, but quickly realized it would be impossible with water polo, so I chose the next best thing: practice of art. I will pursue a career and degree in architecture in my graduate studies.
CalBears.com: Goalkeeper is a unique position. When you first started playing water polo, were you a goalie? If not, how did you end up becoming a keeper?
LB: When I first started, I was put in the cage pretty quickly, because of my height and lack of swimming experience.
CalBears.com: What is your favorite part about being a goalkeeper?
LB: The best part about being a goalkeeper would have to be making saves and being the last line of defense.
CalBears.com: What is one word that can be used to describe you? If one word is too difficult, feel free to use a couple.
CalBears.com: What is your most irrational fear?
LB: When I was but a wee child, I was terrified of storm drains and shied away from ever walking near or over one because I didn't want to fall in. Silly to think this was a big fear of mine, but I am happy to say that I no longer carry this anxiety.
CalBears.com: Fill in the blank: I always...
LB: I always smile.
CalBears.com: Fill in the blank: I never...
LB: I never say never.
CalBears.com: As one of the many Southern California natives on the team, what do you miss about SoCal and what is the best thing about living in NorCal? Do you ever take part in the heated debate between SoCal and NorCal?
LB: Of course I miss the Southern California beaches, but I love the Bay Area - beautiful hills, fresh air and a gorgeous view of the Bay has kept me pretty happy to be in NorCal. I enjoy both places. SoCal will always be my hometown, but I would love to stay in the Bay Area.
CalBears.com: In the last women's water polo Q&A, Stephanie Schnugg wanted the next women's water polo student-athlete to answer: If you could be one of your teammates for a day, who would it be and why?
LB: I think it would be really interesting to be a lot of people on the team. But if I had to choose, I would be Camille Hewko and my day would go something like this...wake up fresh and rested with a big smile on my face, go surfing, catch some waves, sunbathe with out worrying about burning, listen to some happy mellow music on my way back to Berkeley, and hang out with all my favorite people, with lots of energy all day long. Maybe make a candy mosaic while I'm at it.
CalBears.com: What question would you want the next women's water polo student-athlete to answer?
LB: If you could only listen to one artist, musician, band, etc for the rest of your life, who would it be and why?
For a complete listing of past Q&As with the California women's water polo team, click here or look on the sidebar on the main women's water polo page.
Position: Two-Meter Defender
Hometown: Old Greenwich, Conn.
High School: Greenwich HS
Paige Lorenz spent five years with the Cal program, taking a redshirt freshman year. She has 77 career goals, which places her 19th on the all-time scoring list (as of 4-28-09). She scored in 19 games her senior year, scoring 43 goals.
Notched a total of 43 goals during her senior campaign (2009), which was nine more goals than she scored in her first three years combined at Cal
Her 43 goals in 2009 ranked her fifth on the team
Turned in 13 multi-goal performances in her senior season
Had a career best of four goals in the 22-5 win over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps on March 15, 2009
Scored a career high 21 goals, including four multi-goal games in 2008
Named to the 2008 All-MPSF and All-American academic teams
In 2008, scored in 14 different matches including two personal highs of three goals against Sonoma State and SDSU
Had two goals in the 14-13 loss to San Jose State (2-10-07)
National/High School Success
League and state MVP
Member of the USA national youth team in 2002 and 2003
American studies major
Parents are Lorrie and Walter Lorenz
Why I Chose Cal
"When I first came to Cal on my recruiting trip, I fell in love with the team. It was very clear to me that everyone on the team not only loved playing water polo but also got along great and were all fun."
From a feature on Lorenz posted April 20, 2009: Paige Lorenz Brings East Coast Spirit to Spieker Aquatics Complex
April 20, 2009
By Eric Dezendorf, Cal Athletic Media Relations
Redshirt senior two-meter defender Paige Lorenz, the captain of California's women's water polo team, has come from proverbial rags to riches over her excellent career in the pool as a Golden Bear.
Lorenz, who hails from Old Greenwich, Connecticut began her career in water polo on the wrong coast for the sport in terms of popularity. The East Coast is not generally known for its prowess in the sport of water polo, but that did not stop former swimmer Lorenz from taking up the sport at the age of 13. She joined the water polo club as a freshman at Greenwich HS, and helped to turn that club into a varsity sport by her junior year. Greenwich was the only public high school in the state with a water polo program, so they would square off against boarding schools and college clubs. Lorenz's talent was quickly noticed and she was lauded with league and state most valuable player awards during her senior season.
Along with her high school success, Lorenz participated in the U.S. national youth team in 2002 and 2003. It was through this team that Lorenz made her college choice. She knew that to take her game to the next level, she had to come out West. But she did not know which school she would attend until visiting the Cal campus.
"It was just fate," Lorenz said, "I had a national team competition in nearby Moraga, and they took us to Berkeley for the day to look around. I said to myself, `I have to come here.'"
After talking to former coach Amber Drury-Pinto, Lorenz signed on to become a Golden Bear. Once she came to Cal, Lorenz was greeted to an entirely new water polo universe.
"The competition here is night and day from what it was in high school, Lorenz declared."I realized I didn't really know how to play. In high school I was just strong and fast, and I just did it. It was kind of like starting from square one."
Lorenz sat out her first year with a redshirt, and attempted to learn the nuances and strategies of a game she had already been playing for five years.
During her first two years in the pool for Cal, Lorenz focused mostly on her defensive game, scoring 13 goals over her redshirt freshman and sophomore campaigns Last year, however, Lorenz broke out of her shell and netted 21 goals, which was good for fifth on the competitive squad. Lorenz attributes her offensive barrage to some of Cal head coach Rich Corso's strategy.
"Coach Corso really emphasizes creativity and I think it has changed my game completely." Lorenz said, "I used to just focus on my defense, but in the last year or so, I've focused a lot more on offense and driving."
The switch of concentration has paid massive dividends. So far this year, Lorenz has put 39 balls into the net, fifth on a strongly offensive team, but she is hungry for more. Lorenz, however, does not want the glory for herself, and is hoping to help add to a successful team effort which will hopefully result in an NCAA Tournament appearance and a journey deep into the tournament.
Lorenz is one of two graduating seniors on the water polo squad this season, and says her greatest accomplishment in the pool was not a goal scored or a game won, but having the opportunity to lead the team as captain this year. The Bears have not been upset by an opponent ranked lower than them this season, a tribute not only to Lorenz's leadership but to the quality of the team. Lorenz is not ready to be done with water polo yet, and hopes to keep playing, coaching and leading after this season ends.
"Stick with it." Lorenz advises younger players looking to compete in water polo, "I came to Cal and I was awful. I redshirted a year, then I didn't play much the next year, it was hard. It is a process, you can't expect you play right away, but now I'm the captain, so it's been great."
CalBears.com: As an East Coast native, what made you choose Cal?
PL: "In high school, I knew I wanted to come to California to play college polo; at that time there wasn't as much opportunity to play on the East Coast. After my first trip to Berkeley I knew this was the place for me. I fell in love with the school, the team, the city and pretty much the whole Bay Area." ?
CalBears.com: What was the transition from Connecticut to California like for you?
PL: "The transition was pretty easy for me. Luckily when I first got here, we started practices, and I got to know my teammates pretty well. They made me feel so at home here that I never had a problem being so far from home." ?
CalBears.com: Which do you prefer - the East Coast or West Coast?
PL: "Well I love my family, and they are all on the East Coast, so any chance I get to go back and see them is great. But I would have to say the West Coast is my home now." ?
CalBears.com: Where is the hardest place to play in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation?
PL: "I would have to say ASU because I hate that kind of heat, and also the sandstorms."
CalBears.com: Fill in the blank - I always..."
PL: "I always...look good." ?
CalBears.com: Fill in the blank - I never..."
PL: "I never...miss an episode of `Lost.'"?
CalBears.com: Whose diary, from any point in history, would you like to read?
PL: "My younger sister Brooke's. I once read an old one of hers, and I think I was crying I was laughing so hard. If I could get my hands on more of those, it would be great." ?
CalBears.com: In the last women's water polo Q&A, Remy Champion wanted the next women's water polo student-athlete to answer: Would you rather eat a glass full of live wasps or eat glass?
PL: "I'm going to go with eating the live wasps, in honor of Remy Champion." ?
CalBears.com: What question would you want the next women's water polo student-athlete to answer?
PL: "Beyonce or Sasha Fierce?" ?