Photo by: Andy Wilhelm

Harper Coach of the Year, Momdzhyan Player of the Year And Two Other Tritons Named To All-America Squad


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BRIDGEPORT, Pa. -The University of California San Diego's Denny Harper was named Coach of the Year and senior Arman Momdzhyan was tabbed Player of the Year as the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPC) announced its NCAA Division II honorees. In addition, junior Sam Thompson and freshman Connor Turnbow-Lindenstadt earned All-America accolades.

In his 38th season as head coach of the UC San Diego men's water polo program, Harper guided the Tritons to an 11-14 overall record and a 6-1 mark in the Western Water Polo Association (WWPA). UC San Diego was ranked as high as 12th nationally and faced 11 teams ranked inside the top 10.

Harper is now a 15-time ACWPC Coach of the Year and earned his seventh straight ACWPC Division II Coach of the Year accolade.

After completing an outstanding senior season, Momdzhyan repeated as the ACWPC Player of the Year. He earned the honor following the 2016 season as well. The utility player finished second on the roster with 54 goals to go along with six assists and 14 steals. In addition to being named the top player in Division II, he also garnered ACWPC Division II All-America First Team recognition and was an All-WWPA First Team selection.

Momdzhyan is UC San Diego's 18th Player of the Year, joining Chase Cockerill (2015), Josh Stiling (2012, 2014), David Morton (2011), Steven Donohoe (2007, 2009), Ty Lackey (2006), Jonathan Hopkins (2002, 2003, 2005), Jonathan Samuels (2000, 2001), Ross Mecham (1998, 1999) and Romas Kudirka (1996, 1997).

Thompson was selected as the ACWPC All-America First Team goalie. The Villa Park native recorded 225 saves for a .478 save percentage while also collecting 29 steals and nine assists on the season. This marks the first All-America honor of Thompson's career.

After a stellar debut season, Turnbow-Lindenstadt earned ACWPC All-America First Team accolades. He led UCSD in scoring with 56 goals and 36 steals while also compiling 16 assists. The Newport Beach native was named the WWPA Freshman of the Year as well as an All-WWPA Second Team selection and a WWPA All-Tournament First Team honoree.

The Tritons led all of Division II with their three All-America recipients.

Player of the Year
Arman Momdzhyan, UC San Diego

Coach of the Year
Denny Harper, UC San Diego

First Team
Sam Thompson (Goalie), UC San Diego
Arman Momdzhyan, UC San Diego
Connor Turnbow-Lindenstadt, UC San Diego
Jonathan Lotero, California Baptist
Tanner Shore, California Baptist
Angel Rojas, Concordia Irvine
Kyle Eoff, Fresno Pacific
Zarko Sadikovic, Gannon

Honorable Mention
Connor Schmitz, Mercyhurst
Djordje Stavrevski, Salem International


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