Home All Sports Men’s water polo looks to be CCCAA playoffs contender again

Men’s water polo looks to be CCCAA playoffs contender again

Cuesta College goalkeeper Dan Davis faces off against Golden West College’s top scorer Riley Pfieffer. Photo by Anthony Ramos

The Cuesta College Cougars finished their 2018 regular season second in the Western State Conference (WSC) after reaching the CCCAA playoffs for the 40th straight season. 

The Cougars ended their campaign with a 22-10 record overall, which also served as the 40th consecutive winning season for Cuesta College.

Led by Freshman Gabriel Browning, the Cougars named 10 players to All-WSC teams last year, as well as three players to All-State teams. Browning landed a spot on the 2018 All-State First Team, and Freshmen Brandon Green and Mason Smith both earned places on the All-State Second Team. Browning was also honored as the sole All-American selection for the Cougars that season. 

Both Browning and Smith return to the pool this year, as do sophomores Steven Chapman, Cooper Greene, Satoshi Shinkawa, Ryan Svercheck, and Zachary Tucker, who were All-WSC Honorees as well. 

Joining them on the team are freshman Aleksa Sisakovic and sophomore Jack Felsted, who both already have 36 goals each on the season. Other notable additions to the Cougars’ offense include freshmen Jacob Sill and Joshua Halopoff, who have 29 and 22 goals to their names, respectively. Currently sitting as one of the Cougars’ top three goal scorers for the season, Sill also boasts 10 assists so far. Leading the team in assists is freshman Layne Porter, who has 33 so far. 

Though standout sophomore Mason Smith returns to goal for the Cougars this year, he is also joined by goalkeepers Colton Boyd (currently with 47 saves to his name) and Dan Davis (with a solid 35). Smith currently sits comfortably with 45 saves in only nine games played. 

Also new for the Cougars this year is their home stomping — or rather swimming — ground. Though Cuesta College boasted an impressive record last year, they did so all while playing on the road, as the Cuesta College Aquatics Center went under renovation in May 2018 and was not completed in time for the Cougars to have a pool to use at home. 

All that changed June 14 of this year, though, as the Aquatics Center was reopened, providing the Cougars with the opportunity of having the advantage at home. This has served them well so far this season, as their home record currently stands at 4-3. 

With a current record of 12-6 overall and 1-1 in the conference, the Cougars appear to be well on their way to adding a 41st consecutive winning season to their already impressive streak. As of the CCCAA weekly poll posted on September 30, Cuesta College sits ranked fourth behind Long Beach City College (#1), Golden West College (#2), and L.A. Valley College(#3).