Women's Water Polo Announces Incoming Class of 2015

CLAREMONT, CA - Pomona-Pitzer Water Polo has added eight student athletes to the roster, head coach Alex Rodriguez announced.

Pitzer College’s incoming class will include Carter Grant (Carpinteria, CA/Carpinteria HS), Rachel Noll (Tustin, CA/Foothill HS) and Alyssa Woodward (Riverside, CA/Arlington HS).

Pomona College’s incoming class will include Chrissie Alving-Trinh (Fresno, CA/Clovis West HS), Vicky Gyorffy (Sacramento, CA/Rio Americano HS), Mahalia Prater-Fahey (San Diego, CA/Patrick Henry HS), Sallie Walecka (Palo Alto, CA/Castilleja School) and Sarah Westcott (Menlo Park, CA/Sacred Heart Prep).

“This is an incredible recruiting class both in quality and quantity. We have struggled in the past with numbers so being able to bring in eight players that can contribute right away makes this class special.”

Grant, a 5’9” utility player was named two time captain and two-time 1st team All Tri-Valley selection in her Junior and Senior years at Carpinteria HS. She has also received honors as an all league swimmer and team captain and MVP. Carter’s main reasons for choosing Pitzer are the core values that the college embodies.

Rodriguez added “Carter brings much needed size to our team. We have traditionally been on the smaller side but her ability as a position player immediately gives our team great balance.”

Noll comes from a long line of accomplished goalies from Foothill HS. In her 4 years, Foothill HS earned League Championships three of four years culminating with a trip to the CIF Southern Section Division I Championship Game. She was a 4-time recipient of the Scholar Athlete Award including Top Scholar Athlete in 2011. She is also a 4-time member of the Southern Pacific Zone Olympic Development Team. Rachel chose Pitzer because of its intimate atmosphere, involved professors, and the array of resources available from being a part of the Claremont Consortium. She is looking forward to being a member of the Pomona-Pitzer Women’s Water Polo Team and being coached by Coaches Rodriguez and Lee. She also adds that the bread at the Pitzer dining hall is to die for!

“Rachel comes to us with a great amount of experience even as a freshman. She played for great programs at both Foothill High School and with the SoCal Club.” Rodriguez noted. “It will also be great to add depth at the goal keeper position.”

Woodward is a 5’8” utility player who was named team MVP and Arlington HS Female Athlete of the Year as a Senior. As a Junior, she was named 1st team all CIF as a goalie when she lead her team to a CIF Southern Section Div 5 Title. Despite making the transition to a field player in her senior year, she was still named 2nd team All CIF. She was also named 1st team All League for the 3rd straight year. She is a 3-time recipient of the Scholar Athlete Award.

“Alyssa is an athlete in every sense of the word. She is an incredible goalie but also a very skilled field player. She can set, guard, swim and shoot. She literally does it all.” Rodriguez adds “She is going to make a huge impact right away and we are extremely excited to have her here.”

Alving-Trinh is an attacker that comes to Pomona from Fresno where she was team captain and 3 year starter for a very good Clovis West team. She earned 2nd team All League honors as well as 2nd team All Valley recognition. In her time at Clovis West the team won two Valley Championships and was named to the Clovis Unified All Star Team. She is also a 3-time Valley champion as a swimmer. She is a 6-time scholar athlete. Chrissie chose Pomona because of its great academic reputation and for the opportunity to play for a team with a lot of potential and a great coaching staff.

Rodriguez adds “Chrissie brings a lot of experience from a team that knows how to win. She is a great defender and will contribute right away with her speed and knowledge of the game.”

Gyorffy is a 5’5” attacker from Rio Americano HS where her team just won their 9th straight section title. She also won four straight league titles while being named 1st team All League and 1st Team All Section. She was named league MVP as a Senior. Vicky was a member of the Central California Zone Olympic Development Team and was also a 3-time league champion as a swimmer. Vicky’s main reasons for choosing Pomona are that it is a great school that offers an amazing education as well as a competitive athletic program. On top of that, it had everything she was looking for in a college.

Vicky is the second Gyorffy to play for Coach Rodriguez, her sister Janelle (PO’09) also played for the Sagehens. Rodriguez said about Vicky “She is an incredibly bright student and gifted athlete. She has some big shoes to fill but she is a very smart player with great instincts for the game and great hustle. We are expecting great things from her.”

Prater-Fahey is a 5’8” center with a great work ethic. At Patrick Henry HS the San Diego Union Tribune tabbed her as a player to be watched in the 2010-2011 season. By season’s end she was named to the County Senior All-Star Game. She was named team MVP her senior year as she lead the team in scoring where she graduates with the second highest goal total in team history. She was named 2-time 1st team Eastern League and Eastern League Player of the Year as a Junior.

“Mahalia is a talented offensive player with a knack for scoring goals.” Rodriguez said “We focused on bringing in position players with good size and she definitely fills that need for us. She has incredible potential and a great attitude and work ethic all of which will help her contribute right away but also allow her to continue growing as a player in her time here.”

Walecka is a 5’7” goalie from the Castilleja School in Palo Alto. She played for Olympians Brenda Villa and Jessica Steffens and anchored a defense that got them to the CIF Central Coast Section Division II title game. She was named 2nd team All CIF. She also received Honorable Mention All-Peninsula Athletic League Bay Division. Sallie chose Pomona because of its nice environment and great professors who really know their students well.

“Sallie comes to Pomona with an understanding of what it takes to win.” Rodriguez commented. “She played for great coaches on a team where she was asked to step into a big role. We are always excited to get kids from winning programs and Sallie has shown that she can shine on that big stage.”

Westcott is a 5’5” utility player with great offensive skills. She knows a thing or two about winning. As a senior at Sacred Heart, her team won the CIF CCS Division II Championship. That was SHP’s fourth straight CCS Div II Championship. Sarah captained a team that went 26-3 where they won the Western Catholic Athletic League. In her Senior year she was named 1st team All CIF, 1st team All League, All Prep 1st team, and All County 1st team. Sarah chose to attend Pomona because of the opportunity it offers to fully balance an exceptional education and compete at a high level of water polo.

“Sarah is a great example of what this program is about.” Rodriguez said. “She is not the biggest player but you’d never know by watching her play. She knows how to compete and she knows how to win. She works hard and that’s always something you like to see as a coach.”

“I am really looking forward to what this group of kids will bring to the team next year.” Rodriguez added. “We were down in our numbers so we’re excited to have so many kids coming in. The exciting thing about this class is not only the numbers, but also that they bring a great balance of size, speed, skill and experience so we couldn’t be happier with this group. Each of them comes from a tradition of winning and we love to see that. Pomona-Pitzer has been in the SCIAC Finals five of the last six years, winning three championships and we’re looking to continue that with this class.”