Jan. 12, 1998
Golden Bears Galore in World Championships
The University of California men's and women's water polo programs are well represented at the World Championships Jan. 8-18 in Perth, Australia. On the men's side, ex-Cal athletes include Chris Humbert (1988-91), Chris Oeding (1989-92) and Gavin Arroyo (1990-93). On the women's side, Cal representatives included Maureen O'Toole--currently the head coach of the Bears women's water polo team, current Cal senior Alisa von Hartitzsch, Courtney Johnson (1996), Lynn Wittstock (1985) and Maggi Kelly (1987).
Chris Humbert and Lynn Wittstock had the honor of carrying the American flags Jan. 7 for the United States' swimmers, divers, synchonized swimmers and water polo players during the Opening Ceremony of the Eighth World Swimming Championships. Wittstock, 35, a resident of Berkeley, is co-captain of the USA Team and is competing in her fourth FINA World Championship.
Humbert, 28, is widely reguarded as the best center forward water polo player in the world. Eurowaterpolo Magazine voted him the outstanding player in both the Atlanta Olympics and the 1997 FINA World Cup, where the United States won the title. 1998 marks Humbert's third FINA World Championship.
So far in the 1998 World Championships, the USA men are 2-1 after the first round--losing 7-6 to host Australia and defeating Slovakia, 8-5, and Canada, 10-1. Team USA will continue competition Tuesday, Jan. 13. Scoring for the Cal athletes in the first three matches include five goals for Humbert, four goals for Oeding and two goals for Arroyo.
The USA women are currently 2-2-1 in the World Championships and will face The Netherlands in the quarterfinals Wednesday, Jan. 14. Team USA lost to Russia, 10-4; upset host Australia, 9-7; lost to Canada, 3-2; tied Brazil, 7-7 and crushed New Zealand, 14-4. Scoring for Golden Bears include six goals for O'Toole, five goals for Wittstock, four goals for Johnson, three goals for Kelly and one goal for von Hartitzsch.