Stanford has five polo players earn All-America honors


Junior utility Alex Bowen and sophomore driver Bret Bonanni were named to the ACWPC All-America First Team on Thursday, headlining five Stanford players honored.

Fifth-year senior 2-meter Forrest Watkins was named to the second team, sophomore driver BJ Churnside to the third team and freshman goalie Drew Holland was named honorable mention.

The quintet helped lead the Cardinal to a 23-6 record in 2013 and the program's first appearance at the NCAA Championship Tournament since 2008, finishing third.

This is the third straight first-team All-America selection for Bowen. The San Diego native finished second on the team with 71 goals and 14 hat tricks among his 20 multi-goal games in 2013. A fixture on the USA Water Polo Senior National Team for the past year, Bowen participated with the team at the Volvo Cup in Hungary from Feb. 7-9.

Bonanni earned his first selection to the All-America first team a year after earning second-team honors. The Huntington Beach native set the MPSF record with 97 goals in 2013, and added team-leading totals of 20 hat tricks and 25 multi-goal games. One of the top attackers in the country, Bonanni has also featured with the USA Senor National Team over the past year alongside Bowen, including at last week's Volvo Cup event.

Watkins earned his third All-America honor, being named to the second team just as in 2011. Last year he earned honorable mention. This season the fifth-year senior and team captain continued to burnish his reputation as one of the top defensive players in the country, contributing to a Cardinal defense that allowed just over seven goals per game, among the top marks in the MPSF.

Churnside was named All-America honorable mention for the second straight year, as he upped his scoring total from 31 to 45, a figure that finished third on the team. Churnside posted six hat tricks and finished 19th in the MPSF with 1.55 goals per game.

In his first year in the cage for the Cardinal, Holland established himself as one of the MPSF's top goalies, ranking third with a 7.44 goals-against average. The Orinda native also averaged 9.08 saves per game.

Cross country

Three Stanford freshmen -- Sean McGorty, Jack Keelan, and Sam Wharton -- will compete in national and international championship races over the next two weeks.

On Saturday, they will run in the U.S. Junior National Championships on the Flatirons Golf Course in Boulder, Colo. The 8-kilometer (4.97-mile) race will begin at 9:45 a.m., and will be run at an elevation of 5,430 feet.

The U.S. Senior Men's National Championship features defending champion and 13-time Stanford All-America Chris Derrick '12, and eight-time All-America Jacob Riley '11 in the 12K (7.5-mile) race at 11:15 a.m. PT. Both races will be streamed live for free on

This is not a World Championship year for the biennial meet, so there is no qualifying for world spots. However, all three will represent the United States in the junior race at the NACAC Cross Country Championships at the Mount Irvine Bay Golf Club in Trinidad & Tobago on Feb. 22. The meet acts as the championship of North and Central America, and the Caribbean. The junior men's distance is 6K (3.7 miles).

The Stanford trio was among five male juniors selected by a committee to compete for the U.S. in the NACAC meet, based on performances in 2013. McGorty was the only of the three to compete for Stanford cross country in the fall, while Keelan and Wharton redshirted. McGorty earned All-West Region honors while helping the Cardinal to the West Region title. All three are redshirting the indoor track season.

Each was among the top high school runners of 2012-13. McGorty, of Fairfax, Va., won the track and field New Balance Outdoor Nationals in the two mile. Keelan, of La Grange Park, Ill., was second in the mile and fourth in the 5,000 at the same meet. And Wharton, of Tipp City, Ohio, won the Nike Cross Nationals and was sixth at the FootLocker cross country nationals.

Also competing at the NACAC is Stephanie Marcy Dinius '11, a five-time Stanford All-America, who will run in the senior women's race (6K). Dinius was eighth at the Bupa Great Edinburgh International Challenge in Scotland on Jan. 11 while running for the U.S. (21:06 for 6K). Last March, she won the Disney Half Marathon in Anaheim in 1:15.47, breaking the women's record by more than two minutes.

— Stanford Athletics


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