9:25 PM PDT, June 25, 2012
Former UC Irvine All-American Ryan Bailey made history Monday, while Corona del Mar High product John Mann was simply happy to make the team.
Former UCI All-Americans and Olympic veterans Jeff Powers and Tim Hutten join Mann and Bailey on the 13-member U.S. Olympic men's water polo team announced Monday by USA Water Polo.
It will be the first Olympics for Mann, who was an alternate on the 2008 Olympic team that won a silver medal in Beijing, China. He is one of just three first-time Olympians on the squad.
Bailey, along with American captain Tony Azevedo, will become the first U.S. men's water polo players to compete in four Olympic Games, when the veteran-led Team USA opens in London against Montenegro on July 29.
Powers has been a member of the U.S. team in the previous two Olympics and Hutten was a member of the 2008 team.
Mann is a 6-foot-6, 250-pound center who scored six goals to help Team USA finish fourth at the FINA World League Super Final earlier this month in Kazakhstan. He was the 2006 NCAA Player of the Year at UC Berkeley, where he was a three-time All-American.
At CdM, he helped the Sea Kings win three CIF Southern Section championships before graduating in 2003. He was first-team All-American and All-CIF.
Bailey, a 6-6, 245-pound center, also represents the Newport Water Polo Foundation. The 36-year-old scored six goals in the recent FINA World League Super Final and scored seven goals in the 2008 Olympics, when the Americans were defeated by Hungary in the final.
He remains one of the Americans' best scoring threats. At UCI, he was Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Year as a senior in 1998 and a four-time All-American. He played at Millikan High in Long Beach.
Powers, a 6-7, 230-pound defender, also represents the Newport Water Polo Foundation. Now 32, he had six goals at the recent FINA World League Super Final and led Team USA with 11 goals on the way to winning the gold medal at the 2011 Pan American Games. The Pan American victory also allowed the Americans to qualify for the Olympics.
He scored six goals at the 2008 Olympics and was a leading offensive force for Team USA at the 2004 Games. He was a three-time, first-team All-American at UCI, where he also was named All-MPSF three times before completing his eligibility in 2002. He came to UCI from San Luis Obispo High.
Hutten, a 6-5, 215-pound defender, is another representative of the Newport Water Polo Foundation. Primarily counted upon for defense, he scored three goals in Beijing and added two goals at the recent FINA World League Super Final.
Hutten's nine goals in the 2011 Pan American Games were second-most on the team.
He was a two-time All-American at UCI, where he was NCAA and MPSF Player of the Year as a senior in 2007. Now 27, he came to UCI from Los Alamitos High.
The Olympic schedule for the American squad, coached by former USA player Terry Schroeder, also includes matches against Romania (July 31), Great Britain (Aug. 2), Serbia (Aug. 4), and Hungary (Aug. 6), to close out preliminary play in Group B.
The quarterfinals are set for Aug. 8, followed by the semifinals Aug. 10. The medal round is Aug. 12.
— From staff reports