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Water Polo Adds Two More During Early Signing Period

Carin Crawford signed two more standouts to National Letters of Intent.
Carin Crawford signed two more standouts to National Letters of Intent.

Nov. 26, 2012

SAN DIEGO - San Diego State women's water polo head coach Carin Crawford announced the signing of an additional two standouts in Anika Apostalon and Caroline Israels. The pair joins an already announced class of four, which was introduced less than two weeks ago.

Apostalon inks with SDSU as the top swimmer in the state of New Mexico and one of the elite water polo players in the Land of Enchantment. As a swimmer, Apostalon won the New Mexico state championship in the 100 freestyle in 2009, 2011 and 2012, and captured the state title in the 50 free in 2009 and 2011. She also won the 100 backstroke in 2012. Apostalon currently holds the New Mexico high school state record in the 50 free, 100 free, 100 back, 200 medley relay and 200 free relay. The 2012 Olympic Trials participant was also a part of the Albuquerque Academy championship team that won the state championship from 2009-12.

In water polo at New Mexico High School, Apostalon was the 2012 most valuable player and earned all-state honors in 2011 and 2012. She was also an ODP participant in 2011-12 and was a part of the 2012 National Training Selection Camp for the Women's Youth Team.

"Anika is a very talented athlete who has speed, size and a strong work ethic," Crawford said. "She has a remarkable aptitude for the game for only having played for a little under two years. Swimming is still the most important fundamental skill in the sport of water polo, and Anika is fast. She is not only fast wall-to-wall, she is quick and aggressive as a water polo player.

"Anika chose SDSU because we can give her the opportunity to swim and play water polo in college," Crawford added. "She absolutely loves water polo and couldn't imagine giving it up. Her coach and mentor, Robbie Bova of Albuquerque Water Polo Club, has really instilled in Anika a love of the game, and she is excited about taking her skills and talent to the next level as an SDSU Aztec."

Israels will head west from Pompano Beach, Fla., after signing her National Letter of Intent with San Diego State. The reigning Miami Herald Broward County athlete of the year was a four-year varsity team captain at Westminster Academy where she has earned Miami Herald and Sun-Sentinel player-of-the-year honors for three consecutive seasons.

As a member of the Florida Riptides, the 2007-08 Maureen O'Toole Award recipient has ODP experience and was a part of the top-40 national team in 2008-10 and the top-28 national squad in 2009-10. The three-time All-American led her team to the Southeast Zone championship in 2009-10 and a sixth-place effort at the 2010 Junior Olympics.

"Caroline Israels is arguably one of the best players in the state of Florida right now and she is bringing her talents to SDSU," Crawford said. "As a multi-sport athlete, she is a competitor and a great all-around athlete.

"Caroline is long, rangy, and has excellent speed and mobility. Caroline has great leg strength, plays high in the water and has a strong accurate shot. She was a key player in leading her Florida Riptides team to a top-5 finish at the Junior Olympics in 2011, under the leadership of coach Carroll Vaughan.

"At SDSU, Caroline will join two of her Riptides teammates, San Diego State sophomores Taelor Moreno and Juliana Matos. Caroline has all the tools to become an impact player for us at SDSU. She is an excellent student-athlete, and we look forward to welcoming her to Montezuma Mesa."

Apostalon and Israels will join SDSU's other signees, Risa Burke, Alyssa Diacono, Katy Schneider and Jackie Villarreal, on campus in time for the 2013-14 academic year.