Brutocao, Chapman, McKenney Added to Water Polo Recruiting Class
The Waves have five new players now signed to join the program next year.
MALIBU, Calif. – Pepperdine Water Polo Head Coach Terry Schroeder announced the addition of three players to the 2017 recruiting class, with Blake Brutocao, Steven Chapman and Kyle McKenney agreeing to join the Waves for the 2017 season.
Pepperdine announced the signing of two recruits earlier this spring, with Coleman Carpenter and John Claude Marco signing on with the Waves in March, giving Pepperdine five incoming players now. The Waves are coming off of a season in which they won the inaugural Golden Coast Conference Tournament title and went 15-12 on the year.
“Steven, Blake and Kyle add a ton of depth and talent to our recruiting class and I am very excited about the skill set each one brings to our program,” said Schroeder. “Adding them to guys like Coleman and John Claude, who we already have signed, makes this a very deep class and will help us achieve our goals of winning another GCC Championship and challenging for an NCAA title.”
Brutocao, a 6-3, 230 pound center, comes to Pepperdine from Damien High School in La Verne, Calif. after playing four varsity seasons for the Spartans. He was a three-time All-Baseline League first team honoree and helped lead Damien to two Baseline League championships. Brutocao earned All-CIF second team honors in 2015 and as a senior he scored 87 goals, drew 32 ejections and had 27 assists while serving as a team captain.
Also successful in the classroom, Brutocao was Damien’s 2017 Scholar Athlete of the Year, was a 2015 and 2016 USA Water Polo Academic All-American and earned Golden Honor Roll distinction with a 4.0 GPA all four years during his prep career. He played his club water polo for Foothill Club, winning a 2015 Ironman Super Finals championship and a 2014 International Children’s Games silver medal.
“I chose Pepperdine because of the strong academics, beautiful campus and emphasis on faith,” said Brutocao.
“Blake is a big and talented left-handed center,” said Schroeder. “He will add depth to our center position and he has a great outside shot. I am looking forward to Blake coming in and competing for a good deal of minutes right away.”
A 6-2, 215 pound driver, Chapman hails from Porterville, Calif. and comes to Pepperdine after playing four varsity seasons at Porterville High School. After a tremendous senior season, Chapman was named the CIF Central Section Division II Most Valuable Player, Fresno Bee Offensive Player of the Year and both the Time-Delta and Orange Belt Player of the Year. He was Porterville’s three-time MVP and for his career he racked up 435 goals, 229 steals and 139 assists.
Another standout in the classroom, he earned Valedictorian honors this year, the Porterville Education Foundation Science award the last two years and both the Principal’s Award and Scholar-Athlete Award the past three years. Chapman has played for the Porterville Water Polo Club since 2011 and competed in Junior Olympics for the last six years.
“I chose Pepperdine because it is a smaller Christian university with an excellent academic reputation, as well as its excellent water polo coaching staff,” said Chapman.
“Steven is a weapon on the perimeter,” said Schroeder. “He is a finisher, which means he has a knack for finding the back of the cage and scoring goals. I love Steven's passion for the game and he is a great addition to our team.”
McKenney is a 6-2, 180 pound goalie out of Buchanan High School in Clovis, Calif. who comes to Pepperdine after four varsity water polo seasons and two varsity baseball seasons during his prep career. Each of the last three seasons he has been named a Fresno Bee All-Star, All-Conference and All-League first team, and team MVP. McKenney was the 2015 Tri-River Defensive Player of the Year, and in 2016 he won both the CIF Central Section MVP and Tri-River Player of the Year. The Fresno Bee named him their 2016 Player of the Year and one of their five “Prep Athletes to Watch.” McKenney helped Buchanan to CIF Central Section Division I championships in 2013 and 2016. For his prep career, McKenney amassed 835 saves, 52 steals, a 72% save percentage and allowed just 5.0 goals per game. On one of the top high school baseball teams in the country, he was also a pitcher and catcher for Buchanan.
With a 4.16 GPA, McKenney earned numerous awards in the classroom including being a California Scholastic Federation Lifetime Member, Buchanan High School B'Nai B'Rith Scholar-Athlete Award winner, National Honor Society member, Academic Scholar of Distinction, Buchanan Foundation Award winner and a USAWP Academic All-American. McKenney has played for Royal Water Polo Club the last two years and was a member of the 2017 Los Angeles Athletic Club Men's National League Team.
“I chose Pepperdine for many reasons,” said McKenney. “The excellent business school, highly competitive water polo team, great coaching staff, the opportunity to grow in my faith and the location is amazing as well.”
“Kyle is a talented goalie with a ton of confidence in his ability and potential,” said Schroeder. “He is a competitor who tends to rise to the occasion and we are looking forward to seeing how far he can take his game at this level.”