Wilson Water Polo
Long Beach Poly Wilson

Long Beach Wilson, Poly Water Polo Player Earn CIF Awards

As expected the release of the CIF Southern Section’s All-CIF girls’ water polo teams brought some big honors to Long Beach, following the Moore League’s historic 2017-18 season.

Prior to this year there had only been one league team to ever reach a CIF championship game, which resulted in a frustrating loss for Wilson.

This year, the Bruins claimed the school and the city’s first-ever CIF title in girls’ water polo, while Poly also made history with a silver-plaque in the school’s first-ever championship appearance.

Wilson’s Brooke Gruneisen was named CIF-SS Division Division 3 Player of the Year and Wilson coach Barry O’Dea was named CIF Coach of the Year, a major honor in his first year coaching the Bruins.

Three Wilson players were named to the All-CIF team: Ava Bishop, Ava Smith, and Delainey Whalen. There’s even better news for Wilson fans: Gruneisen will return for her senior season next year and the other three players are all freshmen or sophomores.

In Division 4, a pair of Poly seniors were named All-CIF, as Sydney Brightenburg and Darby Huff both received the honor.

Basketball and soccer All-CIF teams are expected to be released next week.

Mike Guardabascio
An LBC native, Mike Guardabascio has been covering Long Beach sports professionally for 13 years, with his work published in dozens of Southern California magazines and newspapers. He's won numerous awards for his writing as well as the CIF Southern Section’s Champion For Character Award, and is the author of three books about Long Beach history.