Pomona-Pitzer Men's and Women's Water Polo coach Alex Rodriguez earned USA Water Polo's 2012 Monte Nitzkowski Distinguished Coaching Award, it was announced this week.

The Nitzkowski Award is given in recognition of a coach's exemplary work with his or her collegiate programs, as well as for commitment and dedication to furthering USA Water Polo's mission.

During the 2001-12 academic year, Rodriguez was named the Division III Coach of the Year in the fall for Men's Water Polo, and in the spring for Women's Water Polo, while guiding Pomona-Pitzer to SCIAC titles in both sports. The Sagehen Women's Water Polo team qualified for the NCAA Championships for the fourth time in his tenure, competing against Stanford in the opening round at San Diego State.

This past fall, Rodriguez guided the Pomona-Pitzer Men's Water Polo team to an 8-0 regular season record in the SCIAC and a share of the league title. The Sagehens also finished fifth in the Western Water Polo Association championships, defeating Claremont-Mudd-Scripps and No. 19 Santa Clara in the consolation bracket after a narrow loss to Loyola Marymount in the first round.

Rodriguez will be honored at the USA Water Polo National Awards Dinner on Saturday, January 19, at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. This banquet is held in conjunction with the USA Water Polo Assembly.