CSULB’s Gavin Arroyo has been named the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) Men's Water Polo co-Coach of the Year. Arroyo, who is in his second year with the 49ers, shared the honor with UC Irvine's Marc Hunt.
A two-time member of the U.S. Men’s Olympic Water Polo team (1996, 2000), Arroyo spent the past two years as an assistant coach at the University of California, Berkeley; recently served as an assistant coach (2005) for the U.S. Men’s Senior National Team, planning training schedules, aiding in game preparation, organizing fund-raising events and being responsible for fundamentals, tactic implementation and conditioning; and served as the head coach for the Olympic Club of San Francisco men’s team for two years (2004-05).
Arroyo led LBSU to a 17-15 mark in 2007, a six-game improvement over last year's 2006 record of 11-17. The 49ers went 2-6 in conference play, but four of the six defeats were by just one goal. Last season, the 49ers lost six conference games by an average of almost seven goals per game. Included in the 49er wins this season was a thrilling 7-5 win over then No. 2-ranked Stanford University at the 49er campus pool.
In addition, four Long Beach State players were selected to All-MPSF teams in 2007, led by senior goalie Steve MacKenzie, who was named third team All-MPSF. MacKenzie led the MPSF in saves per game at 9.82 and recorded 275 saves this season, a mark that ranks third-best on the 49er single-season chart. MacKenzie also garnered 531 career goalie saves for fifth-place on the LBSU career chart.
Earning honorable mention were seniors Travis Buchanan and Clint Wilson and junior Jake Kinne. Kinne finished third on the squad with 39 goals this season after transferring to CSULB from Long Beach City College. Buchanan and Wilson are both four-year letter winners for the 49ers. Buchanan tallied a personal-best 13 goals this season and Wilson had 25 goals, good for fifth on the squad.