December 29, 2009

Women's Water Polo All-Decade Team Selected

Dec. 29, 2009

Yvonne Conard, 1999-2002


Jen D'Anna, 2002-06


Teressa Gorbett, 2000-03


Katy Kunkel, 2002-05


Gillian Morgan, 2006-2009


Aimee Stachowski, 2004-07


Kelley Tiffany, 1999-2002


The conclusion of the first decade of the new millennium is just days away and to commemorate it, the UC Santa Barbara Athletics Department will take a look back and honor the athletes who have made the biggest impact on their respective teams over the past 10 years.

It has been a decade that saw a national championship, numerous Big West titles, All-Americans, Players of the Year, record-setting performances and far more victories than defeats.

In a retrospective look, the team sports at UCSB will release the All-Decade Teams - compiling the players who helped make those teams successful from 2000-09.

Sure, there are certain criteria for selecting the starting lineups of these teams. To be considered for the All-Decade Team in his or her sport, a student-athlete must have played the majority of their contests in the past 10 years; student-athletes who spent more time at UCSB to accomplish greater things typically will be given the edge over those who either left early or started late, but it won't rule out transfer students or those who departed for professional careers; while the players selected may have won more awards or had better statistics, the All-Decade Teams don't go solely by what happens between the lines or shows up in the box scores - intangibles play a large role; the idea of the All-Decade Team is to make the best starting lineup of the players who competed for UCSB from 2000-09. Part eight of this 10-part series, which is being released over the final two weeks of 2009, is the UC Santa Barbara women's water polo team.

UCSB has sponsored women's water polo since 1996, so this was just the second decade and first full one that the Gaucho women have competed as a Division I program. With that said, in the past 10 seasons, UCSB has had seven players earn All-American honors, six named to All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation teams and three earn All-Big West nods.

Many talented players have played in the blue and gold across the past 10 seasons, these are the starting seven of the All-Decade Team. Here are the picks in alphabetical order.

Yvonne Conard, 1999-2002, Goalkeeper

Yvonne Conard spent three seasons as UCSB's starting goalkeeper and finished her four-year career as the Gauchos' all-time saves leader, an honor she still holds. She posted a total of 595 saves at UCSB, including a career best 206 as a senior. The Modesto, Calif. native posted a 6.68 career goals against average and a 6.26 saves average. At the 2001 National Collegiate Select Championship, which the Gauchos won, she was named to the All-Tournament team.

Jen D'Anna, 2002-06, Utility

Jen D'Anna finished her four-year career at UCSB with 152 goals, which ranks third all-time in the Gaucho history books. The Riverside, Calif. native also capped off her career with 2006 All-American and All-Mountain Pacific Sports Federation honors. She led the team in goals during the 2004 and 2006 seasons, posting a career-best 59 goals during her senior year, which is the third most by a Gaucho in a single season. Her final two years at UCSB, the Gauchos posted back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in program history.

Teressa Gorbett, 2000-03, Two-Meter Defender

Teressa Gorbett was a four-year letterwinner for the Gauchos and earned All-American and All-MPSF honors as a senior. She tallied a total of 117 goals during her career at UCSB, ranking sixth all-time. She led the Gauchos with 45 goals during her senior year.

Katy Kunkel, 2002-05, Two-Meter Defender

A 2004 All-American and Second Team All-MPSF selection, Katy Kunkel was tremendous both offensively and defensively. The Dove Canyon, Calif. native finished her four-year career at UCSB with 102 career goals, which ranks seventh in school history. She posted a career-best 34 goals during her sophomore season and was second on the team in 2004 with 29 goals.

Gillian Morgan, 2006-2009, Utility

Gillian Morgan ended her career at UCSB as the Gauchos' second most prolific scorer with 205 career goals. The Sacramento, Calif. native led Santa Barbara in goals for three consecutive seasons and as a senior, she posted a school record 83 goals and led the Big West conference with an average of 2.86 goals per game. Morgan also became the first All-American since the 2006 season this past spring when she earned Honorable Mention All-American honors in addition to First Team All-Big West accolades.

Aimee Stachowski, 2004-07, Two-Meter Defense

The only UCSB player that earned three All-MPSF honors this decade, Aimee Stachowski is arguably one of the all-time best Gauchos. The 2005 All-American also concurrently represented the United States while at UCSB, competing for the National Team during her collegiate career. The two-meter defender finished her career with 91 goals, ranking 10th all-time in the UCSB history books.

Kelley Tiffany, 1999-2002, Two-Meters

The Gauchos' all-time leading scorer, Kelley Tiffany accumulated 213 career goals during her four years at UCSB and led the team in scoring each season she played. The two-meter player earned All-American honors in both 1999 and 2001, earning All-MPSF accolades each of those years. Tiffany also earned All-Tournament honors at the 2001 National Select Collegiate Championships.

To see the All-Decade women's volleyball team, click here

To see the All-Decade men's water polo team, click here

To see the All-Decade women's soccer team, click here

To see the All-Decade men's soccer team, click here

To see the All-Decade men's volleyball team, click here

To see the All-Decade women's basketball team, click here

To see the All-Decade men's basketball team, click here