Cutino Award for 2022

Womens College Water Polo
homesteadjoe
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Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Tue Apr 26, 2022 8:16 pm

Anyone have thoughts on who the Cutino Award will go to and what implications the NCAA tournament could have on candidates?

I would also be interested if anyone knows how the selection process for the Cutino works. I was surprised at the number of times that the MPSF player of the year and the Cutino Award winner were different.

If USC wins, I think the award should go to Paige Hauschild. She really can do it all (offense, defense, even sprints). She led her team in scoring in nearly every game against top 5 opponents (7 out of 9 games).

If Stanford prevails like most people think, my guess is the award would go to Makenzie. She’s racked up a lot of points this year.

For UCLA, the obvious candidate is Maddie Musselman. Unless the committee is convinced by her point total or wants to reward her total body of work, I don’t think she’ll win because I just don’t see UCLA playing in the championship game this year much less winning. In recent memory, with the exception of 2013 (Melissa Seidemann) and 2017 (Ashleigh Johnson) the Cutino Award has gone to a player from the team that wins the championship game.

For Cal, I think the only possible candidate would be Isabel Williams. For a player from Cal to win, that would mean that Cal would need to win the championship or at least make the final, scenarios which only happen if Williams plays lights out.

If UC Irvine makes some noise at the tournament, I think Tara Prentice would be very deserving of considerations. She’s had a great season and been a leader for her team. I’m not sure how open the committee is to candidates from outside the Big 4, barring a scenario where UC Irvine wins it all or makes it into the championship game.

I think USC pulls it out over Stanford in the championship this year and Hauschild comes away with the award. Paige will have to play outstanding on both sides of the ball for USC to beat Stanford which is why I think she would win. My feeling is the award is still fluid and the winner hasn’t been preordained. If true, it makes the NCAA tournament that much more exciting. It will be interesting to see who wins the award. Many great candidates this year!

Rbpolo0414
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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby Rbpolo0414 » Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:13 pm

homesteadjoe wrote:Anyone have thoughts on who the Cutino Award will go to and what implications the NCAA tournament could have on candidates?

I would also be interested if anyone knows how the selection process for the Cutino works. I was surprised at the number of times that the MPSF player of the year and the Cutino Award winner were different.

If USC wins, I think the award should go to Paige Hauschild. She really can do it all (offense, defense, even sprints). She led her team in scoring in nearly every game against top 5 opponents (7 out of 9 games).

If Stanford prevails like most people think, my guess is the award would go to Makenzie. She’s racked up a lot of points this year.

For UCLA, the obvious candidate is Maddie Musselman. Unless the committee is convinced by her point total or wants to reward her total body of work, I don’t think she’ll win because I just don’t see UCLA playing in the championship game this year much less winning. In recent memory, with the exception of 2013 (Melissa Seidemann) and 2017 (Ashleigh Johnson) the Cutino Award has gone to a player from the team that wins the championship game.

For Cal, I think the only possible candidate would be Isabel Williams. For a player from Cal to win, that would mean that Cal would need to win the championship or at least make the final, scenarios which only happen if Williams plays lights out.

If UC Irvine makes some noise at the tournament, I think Tara Prentice would be very deserving of considerations. She’s had a great season and been a leader for her team. I’m not sure how open the committee is to candidates from outside the Big 4, barring a scenario where UC Irvine wins it all or makes it into the championship game.

I think USC pulls it out over Stanford in the championship this year and Hauschild comes away with the award. Paige will have to play outstanding on both sides of the ball for USC to beat Stanford which is why I think she would win. My feeling is the award is still fluid and the winner hasn’t been preordained. If true, it makes the NCAA tournament that much more exciting. It will be interesting to see who wins the award. Many great candidates this year!


Cutino is voted on by the D1 coaches. So I think it will be tough for Paige to pass Maddie and McKenzie as they are both Seniors. Paige has another year so I think the coaches will give the nod to one of the other two.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby SwimCoach » Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:19 pm

I think that it will go to whoever plays they best in the NCAA tournament, not necessarily the winner.

I agree that M. Fischer and Musselman are the clear favorites for Stanford and UCLA respectively, but my third finalist would be Kearns from USC. She is a force in the middle and teams have had to really focus on her this year which has opened up a lot of space for their shooters. Kearns not only leads the team in goals with 56 compared to Hauschild's 43, but if you look at their toughest 10 games (Hawaii, UCLA, Cal and Stanford) she also outscored her 21-20 and drawn a ton of ejections. Hauschild is a tremendous players, and not to take anything away from her, but I think that it would be more difficult to replace Kearns than her.

I picked Stanford over USC at the beginning of the year and I will stay with them. It should be a great tournament. I wish that it was local to me, but Michigan is definitely a deserving venue.
Last edited by SwimCoach on Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby Poloplas » Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:40 pm

Yawn, it will be Maddie, although Fischer is the more deserved player.

homesteadjoe
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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Tue Apr 26, 2022 9:51 pm

For those picking Maddie, how connected do you think that is to her performance at NCAAs or do you think it’s a guarantee even with an underwhelming performance by UCLA? For example, what do you think would happen if UCLA loses to UC Irvine or wins that game and loses in the match for 3rd place? I think in any of those two scenarios Maddie still scores a lot of points but based on history I would think team performance would factor in to some degree.

Rbpolo0414
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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby Rbpolo0414 » Tue Apr 26, 2022 11:13 pm

homesteadjoe wrote:For those picking Maddie, how connected do you think that is to her performance at NCAAs or do you think it’s a guarantee even with an underwhelming performance by UCLA? For example, what do you think would happen if UCLA loses to UC Irvine or wins that game and loses in the match for 3rd place? I think in any of those two scenarios Maddie still scores a lot of points but based on history I would think team performance would factor in to some degree.


Hard to get in the head of the coaches. They voted for Ashley Johnson over Maggie Steffens, so I think every year it is different. I think if Stanford wins Fischer may get it, but hard to not pick the MVP of the Olympics.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby Rational » Wed Apr 27, 2022 11:29 am

There is not a 3rd place game at NCAA's

You assume that performance at NCAA's will impact coaches voting - I would say that there is a significant number of coaches that won't watch NCAAs. Their season is over, and the tournament is a redo of the MPSF tourney with 2 schools winning the past 12 straight (yawn). Name recognition carries the most weight, so Musselman wins.
In the case of Johnson over Maggie - consider that there is a significant number of East coast programs that get a vote - if they all play against Johnson and she's the best they've ever seen, of course they vote for what they know. When Stanford comes to town and beats you 22-2, Maggie is less noticeable than losing to Princeton 8-5.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby jeff » Wed Apr 27, 2022 2:43 pm

My predictions:

Cutino Award Finalists: Maddie Musselman, Mackenzie Fischer, and Paige Hauschild. I won't be surprised if Tara Prentice (72 goals in 28 games, 53.33 percent shooting percentage, 70 drawn exclusions, and 30 steals) or Maddie O'Reilly (72 goals in 34 games, 52.6 percent shooting percentage, 67 assists, and 32 steals) is a finalist.

Cutino Award Winner: Musselman is the sentimental choice and I think she will get it. Otherwise, it will be Fischer. Hauschild is USC's third-leading scorer. I will be very surprised if she wins the Award.

There is no award for the most underrated player in the country. If there were and I had a vote, I'd vote for Bayley Weber.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby 2plyBathingSuit » Sat Apr 30, 2022 2:51 am

I concur...Awards are only given to those who "win" . Greatness on the outside looking in is not recognized...especially in the water polo world.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Sun May 01, 2022 11:29 pm

jeff wrote:My predictions:

Cutino Award Finalists: Maddie Musselman, Mackenzie Fischer, and Paige Hauschild. I won't be surprised if Tara Prentice (72 goals in 28 games, 53.33 percent shooting percentage, 70 drawn exclusions, and 30 steals) or Maddie O'Reilly (72 goals in 34 games, 52.6 percent shooting percentage, 67 assists, and 32 steals) is a finalist.

Cutino Award Winner: Musselman is the sentimental choice and I think she will get it. Otherwise, it will be Fischer. Hauschild is USC's third-leading scorer. I will be very surprised if she wins the Award.

There is no award for the most underrated player in the country. If there were and I had a vote, I'd vote for Bayley Weber.


Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I also think Guiral on USC is very underrated as she has the ability to play many different positions in the pool.

homesteadjoe
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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Mon May 02, 2022 1:13 am

Rational wrote:There is not a 3rd place game at NCAA's

You assume that performance at NCAA's will impact coaches voting - I would say that there is a significant number of coaches that won't watch NCAAs. Their season is over, and the tournament is a redo of the MPSF tourney with 2 schools winning the past 12 straight (yawn). Name recognition carries the most weight, so Musselman wins.
In the case of Johnson over Maggie - consider that there is a significant number of East coast programs that get a vote - if they all play against Johnson and she's the best they've ever seen, of course they vote for what they know. When Stanford comes to town and beats you 22-2, Maggie is less noticeable than losing to Princeton 8-5.


Thank you for bringing up these points, this is a very interesting perspective. It seems that the selection process doesn’t provide a very balanced evaluation of the candidates. In your second paragraph, you bring up a great point that there are significantly more programs on the East Coast. Given this, are you surprised that there haven’t been more winners or finalists from outside of MPSF?

homesteadjoe
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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Mon May 02, 2022 1:15 am

Rbpolo0414 wrote:
homesteadjoe wrote:For those picking Maddie, how connected do you think that is to her performance at NCAAs or do you think it’s a guarantee even with an underwhelming performance by UCLA? For example, what do you think would happen if UCLA loses to UC Irvine or wins that game and loses in the match for 3rd place? I think in any of those two scenarios Maddie still scores a lot of points but based on history I would think team performance would factor in to some degree.


Hard to get in the head of the coaches. They voted for Ashley Johnson over Maggie Steffens, so I think every year it is different. I think if Stanford wins Fischer may get it, but hard to not pick the MVP of the Olympics.



This is a good point, hard to imagine how they actually think about this. Yeah, this is true but given that they did this with Steffens it wouldn’t be that surprising.

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Mon May 02, 2022 1:18 am

2plyBathingSuit wrote:I concur...Awards are only given to those who "win" . Greatness on the outside looking in is not recognized...especially in the water polo world.


Yes, it appears very difficult to become a finalist from outside the top 2 teams. That being said, I am surprised there aren’t more finalists from outside of MPSF given how many teams CWPA has. Who would you like to see nominated or win the trophy this year?

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby Rational » Mon May 02, 2022 12:09 pm

homesteadjoe wrote: In your second paragraph, you bring up a great point that there are significantly more programs on the East Coast. Given this, are you surprised that there haven’t been more winners or finalists from outside of MPSF?


No, because the East Coast programs don't offer the same level of competition that the West Coast has. Nobody has ever won a Cutino award that wasn't on the radar 2 years ahead. These kids were all 9's and 10's coming out of HS, I doubt we'll ever see a kid who was an un-recruited walk-on win the Cutino award. So where do the best kids with National Team aspirations choose to go?

As conferences like the Big West and the GCC get stronger and keep loading up on MPSF opponents, we may see more non-MPSF finalists, but I'm not holding my breath

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Re: Cutino Award for 2022

Postby homesteadjoe » Mon May 02, 2022 3:20 pm

Rational wrote:
homesteadjoe wrote: In your second paragraph, you bring up a great point that there are significantly more programs on the East Coast. Given this, are you surprised that there haven’t been more winners or finalists from outside of MPSF?


No, because the East Coast programs don't offer the same level of competition that the West Coast has. Nobody has ever won a Cutino award that wasn't on the radar 2 years ahead. These kids were all 9's and 10's coming out of HS, I doubt we'll ever see a kid who was an un-recruited walk-on win the Cutino award. So where do the best kids with National Team aspirations choose to go?

As conferences like the Big West and the GCC get stronger and keep loading up on MPSF opponents, we may see more non-MPSF finalists, but I'm not holding my breath



I agree that the East Coast can’t offer the same level of competition but what I meant was that since there are a large number of programs out east I am surprised that the votes from coaches of these teams haven’t resulted in more East Coast finalists for this award. It seems Johnson was the one exception.

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